|PPCFC vs C/Tiger, back row, LtoR; Obadin, Srin, Bisan, Makara, Ary, Boris (capt). Front: Sokthorn, Suhana, Sokpheng, Matnorotin, Booysen - click to enlarge|
It was pretty much one-way traffic in the first-half of this first meeting between the two teams under floodlights at RSN Stadium. Cambodian Tiger were under the cosh from the start as Crown controlled possession and created chances. Shane Booysen twice had shots saved before Sary Matnorotin knocked in the first goal, on 10 minutes, after Keo Sokpheng had fed George Bisan and his first-time drilled shot was flapped away by Tiger's keeper Yoshida Yasuyuki into Matnorotin's path. Bisan and Booysen both missed the target, while the Tigers had an effort ruled out for offside, before Crown struck again. On 34 minutes, Yok Ary's long kick found Booysen, and his whipped cross sought out Bisan in unmarked territory and his header found the net. Two minutes later, in almost identical fashion, Bisan's forehead met Booysen's pinpoint center and the ball bounced over the keeper's despairing dive. Cue the duo's double somersault routine. Three minutes before the break and the Tiger's Yoshihara Masato found space behind the home defence and as Ary left his box, the Japanese striker lobbed the ball into the net to make it 3-1. Booysen went close again with a half volley just before the whistle.
After the interval, Neou Sosela blasted over and Booysen blasted wide, whilst Sokpheng was denied by Yasuyuki's brave save and Sok Chanrasmey completely missed a simple tap-in in front of goal. A few half chances followed but the 2nd-half failed to live up to the promise of more goals and it stayed at 3-1 to send champions Crown to the top of the MCL table after three matches.
Crown coach Sam Schweingruber was less than happy at the final whistle of yesterday's 3-1 success over Cambodian Tiger at RSN Stadium. "We played an outstanding first ten minutes and after that I thought we were rubbish. I don't remember the last time I was so unhappy with the performance of the team up to half-time. I thought we were very poor while Cambodian Tiger were extremely poor. In the first-half they should've been 5, 6 or 7 goals down by half-time but we were disappointing.
Our shape in and out of possession was not what we planned, we were lucky to score the 2nd and 3rd goals, a copy of each other, and despite us having lots of chances, I don't think that was a game we will be proud of. We invited them to come to us, like we did against Naga, we were shocking in our decision-making, passing and how to keep the ball.
The second-half was better with our organisation, we had chances but with the quality of players we have, I was disappointed with what we missed in front of goal. But in general I thought it was a better second-half."