A brace from Hafiz Sujad in the second half completed Tampines' comeback against 10-man Warriors, drawing the fury of Jorg Steinebrunner...
Tampines Rovers saw out an enthralling win over Warriors FC at Jurong West Stadium on Saturday, triumphing 4-2 following Hafiz Sujad's brace.
At one point of the game in the first half, this game had a lackluster 0-0 draw written all over it but little did the 1,756 fans in attendance know what was in store for them – a six goal thriller.
Moments after the goal, Warriors came back with a swift reply as Hafiz Nor made no mistake in his finishing to level the game after a fine through ball from Jonathan Behe on the 41st minute.
Just as it looked like both teams will go into the break level, Ridhuan Mohamad popped up and gave the away side the lead. Keeper Yazid Yasin started the attack by launching a long ball forward and Nikolas Rak guided it through to Ridhuan, who rounded Izwan Mahbud and ended the move with a composed finish.
The drama continued to unfold after the break when Fazrul Nawaz found himself in an one-on-one situation with Yazid but having brought the forward down, the keeper received a red card and Fazrul was awarded a penalty.
Half-time substitute Jermaine Pennant calmly put away the spot-kick to make it 2-2. The red card seemed to be a harsh one as Fazrul was going away from goal and the ball he notched past Yazid could not have been reached by him in time as it was going out. Referee Mohd Farhad took his time consulting the linesman before eventually sending Yazid off.
10-man Warriors would eventually fall behind in the 75th minute when Hafiz Sujad won the ball in the final third and dribbled past the Warriors’ defence to finish in the bottom right corner.
Hafiz inflicted more misery on the Warriors after continuous pressure in the 87th minute when his long shot took a deflection to beat substitute goalkeeper Zainol Gulam as the game ended 4-2.
Although the whistle might have blown, the action continued to take place during the press conference when a clearly animated and agitated Jorg Steinebrunner walked in and lamented the referee’s decision to award the penalty and send off Yazid Yasin.
“I am absolutely p******. How many years has he [Farhad] refereed already? With this standard, you can’t even be a referee in the tenth division of countries in Europe. We should be happy if we can open the doors for a professional player. It’s a f****** disgrace what is happening here.” said the 44-year-old German.
“We are 2-1 up and 10 minutes into the second half, he sends off our goalkeeper and gives them a penalty. Nothing else to say isn’t it?”
He finally added: “If you ever want to win a game of football you just get Farhad as referee and you will win the game.”
Fazrul Nawaz, who was brought down by Yazid, added to Jorg’s sentiments that it wasn’t a red.
“I definitely feel that it is not a red card because there was a defender in the penalty area, so to be fair to Yazid he was not the last man and it should not have been a red card for him.” said the 31-year-old.
“I spoke to Yazid and apologised to him after the incident. In the end the referee and linesman made the decision together.”
Steinebrunner’s counterpart, V.Sundramoorthy, was relieved as his team came back from 2-1 down to win the game 4-2 and noted that half-time substitute Jermaine Pennant and moving Hafiz Sujad to the left wing helped complete the comeback.
“We clearly missed Jordan Webb (out with injury) and Pennant in the first half and he (Pennant) made so much of difference when he came on.”
“Hafiz has a good shot on him and since LionsXII days we always encourage him to take shots.”
Hafiz’s shots surely did pay off for Tampines as they remain second place in the table with 20 points while Warriors drop to seventh after Geylang win away from home against DPMM and still remain with nine points.
Tampines face Hougang away from home next week and Warriors are at home to Brunei DPMM.