Sundram: We are keeping calm

The Tampines coach dismissed suggestions that his side is affected by the pressure placed on it and believes the Stags will bounce back strongly after their recent losses... 

For 10 games, Tampines Rovers were unbeaten in all competitions.

Packed with Singapore internationals and a certain Jermaine Pennant, nobody saw a defeat coming for Tampines, but Ceres La Salle managed to shock the Stags 2-1 away in Philippines.

This was followed by another loss, this time to Albirex Niigata (S) in the S.League. A devastating blow, given it ended Tampines’ unbeaten start to the S.League and that the White Swans were also their title rivals.

But Tampines coach V.Sundramoorthy believes there is no need to press the panic button just yet, as his side begin round two of the S.League by paying derby rivals Geylang International a visit.

“It has been more of luck for us recently. We have been unfortunate, we played well but gave away two penalties in recent games,” Sundram told FourFourTwo.

“But we need to take it one game at a time, championships are won at the end of a marathon. No matter what, we will keep calm.”

Tampines midfielder Shahdan Sulaiman echoed his coach’s sentiment.

Shahdan hopes his team can return to winning ways

“We had to lose a game one day, even if I feel we didn’t deserve to lose to Ceres,” Shahdan said.

He added: “There’s always pressure on us to succeed but we are not far off the table in either the AFC Cup or S.League.

“We have experienced campaigners and we all know what’s it like, so there’s no need to press the panic button.”

The last time Tampines faced Geylang, both teams played out a thrilling 3-3 draw. But Tampines also had two players sent off and Shahdan believed it resulted in the Stags being unable to push for a win.

Shahdan has urged his teammates to keep their cool this time round, as the Stags aim to rebound from consecutive losses.

“It won’t be easy, Geylang have played out a lot of draws but those games were not easy to win in the first place,” he said.

“Seeing the first match we played against them, we need to focus and not fall for any ploy to rile us up. To play a match with 10 or less makes things even more difficult.”