Monday, July 6, 2015

Metfone League - review of first two rounds

Let's have a look at the Cambodian League after completion of Round 2 of the MCL. It's interesting to note that every team has already dropped points and only Asia Euro haven't registered any points at all, but with games coming quick and fast, everything could change in the blink of an eye. On day 1 of the campaign, BBU rattled in seven against AEU, who replied with two of their own. Richard Omokafe and Thai Phalla both grabbed two goals apiece. The big one, Phnom Penh Crown against Boeung Ket, ended up goal-less though entertaining for the 3,500 crowd who watched the game at Crown's brand new RSN Stadium in Toul Kork. Chhin Chhoeun scored Army's winner is a  2-1 victory over Western, whilst Cambodian Tiger came good, 2-0, on their debut against National Police. Nagaworld found a winner from Nhim Sovannara over Svay Rieng in a match they dominated but could only break the deadlock late on. The league's other new faces, CMAC, had American import Tony Janzen to thank for a late goal to claim a point in a 1-1 draw with Kirivong.

Round 2 didn't waste any time in getting underway, with games every weekend and midweek for the foreseeable future. It was a duel of two strikers at Svay Rieng, where AEU made a real game of it, only to fall to a late Dzarma Bata goal, for his hat-trick. He was the league's top marksman last term. As for AEU, George Kelechi netted twice. Army drew 1-1 with National Police who've begun the season quietly, while BBU couldn't repeat their opening day massacre, being held 1-1 with CMAC, for whom Janzen scored again. On the artificial turf at Western Stadium, the home team went goal crazy, at both ends. Mohammed Tijani, a recruit from Boeung Ket, rattled in 4 goals including two penalties, as they outgunned Kirivong 6-4, for whom Ek Sopheap netted a hat-trick. To score three in a game and to still lose must've been disheartening for the striker. Boeung Ket picked up their first win, 3-2 over plucky Cambodian Tiger, with Chan Vathanaka scoring twice and Yemi Oyewole grabbing the winner, as player-coach Kihara Masakazu and Suong Virak replied. Playing their second of six straight games at RSN, Phnom Penh Crown rolled over Nagaworld 4-2, who fought back but in vain. Shane Booysen wowed the crowd with two goals and George Bisan also weighed in with a brace, while Chin Chum and Sok Rithy sparked a short-lived revival. The pick of the Round 3 games this midweek is Crown against Cambodian Tiger at RSN on Thursday, kick-off at 6pm. Tiger performed well against Boeung Ket and can they reproduce that form against the champions, who were too quick and strong for Naga at the weekend.

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