Kwon Da Kyung and Lee Kwan Woo struck in the second half to lead the hosts as they fought back against their visitors to claim an important three points
Centreback Kwon Da Kyung, playing in only his second game for the club, headed home the winner in the final quarter of the match two minutes after compatriot Lee Kwan Woo had cancelled out Jozef Kaplan’s first-half opener for the visitors.
It was Kwon who had the first opportunity of the game, his header from a freekick going straight at Geylang goalkeeper Takuma Ito in the 4th minute. Lee then nearly caught out the Japanese custodian with an audacious 35-yard freekick that had Ito scrambling back as it sailed over the bar.
It was the visitors who came closest to scoring though when Yasir Hanapi rose brilliantly to meet Jalal’s cross at the far post in the 20th minute only to be denied by a smart save from Shahril Jantan.
Both teams were struggling to find any rhythm, but Geylang took the lead four minutes after the half-hour on a lightning-quick break.
Sirina Camara’s freekick on the edge of the area was deflected by the wall and the Eagles immediately poured forward, with Yasir managing to set Kaplan free with a through ball.
There was no doubt about the outcome once the Slovakian went clean through as the Geylang captain coolly slotted the ball beyond Shahril for his ninth of the season.
The Protectors were having a wretched first half and went into the break trailing 1-0, and they spurned a good chance to equalise eight minutes after the restart.
Half-time substitute Indra Sahdan looked odds-on to score after a loose ball fell to him in the box, but the striker blazed well over from eight yards after opting for power over accuracy.
A wicked freekick from Lee then bounced in the box as everyone missed it before deflecting off Ito, who looked like he didn’t know anything about it.
Home got the break they were looking for in the 75th minute when Song Ui Young’s charge into the box was illegally halted and referee Jansen Foo pointed to the spot immediately.
Lee made no mistake with a confident finish into Ito’s bottom left corner to draw his side level for his seventh strike of the season, and they went ahead just two minutes later.
A deep cross floated into the box was met by an unmarked Kwon, whose header seemed to take a deflection off Camara before looping into the goal over a hapless Ito for his first goal in Home colors.
That quick about-turn of events stunned the visitors but they were unfortunate not to be on level terms in the 87th minute when Norihiro Kawakami headed Andrew Tan’s cross against the base of the post as a rooted Shahril watched on.
The Home goalkeeper then made a fine, vital save deep into injury time to palm away Kaplan’s header as his team hung on to claim a 2-1 victory in a scrappy encounter.