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Wednesday, August 5, 2015
Wednesday 5 August 2015: Svay Rieng 1 Phnom Penh Crown 3 (Metfone C-League). On an already waterlogged pitch and under heavy rain, Crown got off to the worst possible start when Dzarma Bata slipped through the middle of the defence to fire Svay Rieng into the lead after a mere 38 seconds. Nen Sothearoth then curled a free-kick against the cross-bar before Crown got their first sight of goal, with Shane Booysen’s effort ruled out for offside. The wet surface was not helping either side though Sos Suhana blasted just wide and for the home team, Samoeun Pidor won a race with Yok Ary but couldn’t finish. With the match simmering, it boiled over on 42 minutes when Booysen went through and fell under the challenge of keeper Aim Sovannarath. The referee booked the keeper and awarded a penalty only to change his mind a minute later after consulting with his assistant. The second-half belonged to Crown, as they showed their intent from the word go. George Bisan headed inches wide and then blasted over the top when well-placed. Then on 72 minutes his touch from Odion Obadin’s long ball went to the feet of Keo Sokpheng and his sublime strike from 20 yards sailed into the top corner for a beautiful goal. Four minutes later and Keo Sokngon’s inch-perfect cross was met on the volley by Leng Makara at close range to give the visitors the lead. It was now all one-way traffic with Sokngon’s shot smothered and a Booysen effort missing the target by a whisker. In the fifth minute of time added on, Crown wrapped up the 3 points when Sokngon fed Santi Koroma who laid the ball into the path of Suhana and he blasted home from 16 yards. The match ended with the Crown players giving their thanks to the fantastic travelling support, who sang throughout the whole 90 minutes.
Sam Schweingruber, Crown’s head coach, gave his thoughts after the final whistle at Svay Rieng. “Our preparation for the match wasn’t ideal – the pitch was flooded the day before and our warm-up was not on the soggy pitch, so we went out there a bit uncertain, though that’s no excuse for going a goal down so early. Very disappointed with how we conceded – definitely a big issue as our game plan went out of the window after 40 seconds. In the 1st-half we failed to do enough to really get into the game. Our plan worked out with our substitutions, very happy with how the team showed character and spirit. In the 2nd-half we were the only team that wanted to win the game, but things didn’t go our way until we scored our first goal. I’m very happy for Sokpheng to score such a screamer, and it came from a situation we talked about at half-time. I was proud of the team for their fighting spirit and for not giving up, pushing for more and you could see when we scored what it meant to the team. And we were not satisfied, we wanted to win. I must mention our fans, who were excellent. I heard them throughout, it was nice to have the drums and the support, it’s very encouraging to be far from home and to have people making so much noise and supporting you, it was a great experience. To have our supporters with us was a nice taste of a real professional football environment. I can’t speak highly enough of our fans.”
Wednesday 5 August 2015: Kashima Antlers 5 Phnom Penh Crown Academy 0 (Asia Champions Trophy)
The Crown Academy fell to a strong Kashima Antlers U-18 team who led by three goals at the break and went onto win 5-0 in this opening Asia Champions Trophy match at their 40,000-seater stadium. Playing in front of their home fans Kashima controlled the match right from the kick-off making Crown work hard for the ball. Midfielder Takanobu Nishimoto scored Kashima first ever goal in the competition on 11th minutes after some confusion in the penalty box. Two minutes later Yuki Kakita slotted in the second goal. The two quick-fire goals put pressure on the Cambodians as they struggled to contained the running and quick passing play from Kashima.
The home team continued to dictate the match, organizing attacks and their effort prove fruitful when in the 23rd minute, Hayato Ishizu’s effort founds the back of the net. Head Coah Bouy Dary decided to make changes with Chhuot Senteang brought in to replace Suon Noeut on 32 minutes. The game was in Kashima’s favour 3-0 at the interval.
The Japanese kept their momentum, dominating possession of the ball and the 4th goal arrived on 59minutes through the substitute striker Yuki Shikama that came in just a minute into the match to replace third goal scorer Hayato Ishizu. Juriya Yoshioka finished off any hope of a comeback for Crown in the 65th minute when he scored the fifth goal after a good combination of passes in the middle of the pitch.
After the loss Crown Head Coach, Bouy Dary feels that the boys were not focused and took their time a little bit too much to get used to the condition at the Stadium. “The players came out cold, and bit of fear maybe, which is disappointed as we discussed this before the game.” Dary was speaking to the media after the match. “We lost the game in the opening 20 minutes. Three errors resulted in three goals, clinical play from Kashima. After the first half water break we worked harder out of possession and were more confident with the ball. We created some chances especially Uma and Sovann, at this level you’ve got to take those chances.
Next match for PPCFC Academy is at home in RSN Stadium where they will play Frenz United B and Dary is hoping to turn the page as quickly as possible. “Overall I don’t think the players showed their real quality and potential, we will regroup and focus on next week home game against Frenz. I hope our home fans turn out to support us and make lots of noise” he added. This match will be on Friday, 14 August. [Report courtesy of http://www.act.frenzunited.com.my/.]