Interim coach V. Sundramoorthy saw his side crumble to a 4-0 defeat in their opening 2015 AFC Asian Cup qualifier as they were brushed aside in a second-half collapse
|By Teng Kiat
Singapore got off to a losing start in their 2015 AFC Asian Cup qualifying campaign, as they crashed to a 4-0 defeat against Jordan late on Wednesday night in Amman.
The home side had qualified for the 2011 edition at the expense of the Lions after a 2-1 victory in the King Abdullah Stadium back in 2010, and they got the better of the visitors again as Singapore crumbled in the second half.
Interim coach V. Sundramoorthy handed Shakir Hamzah only his third cap in place of regular left-back Shaiful Esah, while veteran Noh Rahman came in for his first competitive appearance since the 4-0 defeat against China in a 2014 World Cup qualifier in November 2011.
Jordan put Singapore under pressure straight from kick-off, with Khalil Zaid volleying over early on and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 17th minute.
A swift exchange of passes between Odai Al-Saify and Amer Deeb on the edge of the box set up Abdallah Deeb in the area, and he made no mistake with a neat finish past Izwan at the near post.
Singapore was then lucky not to concede a penalty when Ahmed Hayel’s effort appeared to strike Safuwan Baharudin’s left arm, before the striker controlled a long ball in the area and volleyed it just wide in the 40th minute.
The Lions fashioned their first shot on target moments later after skipper Shahril Ishak turned two players and played the ball to Fazrul Nawaz, who teed up Noh for a 30-yard piledriver that was tipped over by Amer Shafi.
Two quick-fire goals from Jordan in the second half then effectively killed off Singapore, as Khalil Zaid and Ahmed Hayel struck in the 51st and 54th minutes respectively.
The former waltzed through the Singapore defence and got lucky as the ball rebounded back to him a couple of times for him to slot home from close range, before the latter curled a beautiful shot into the top right corner after a neat turn in the box to give the Jordanians an unassailable 3-0 lead.
The Singapore defence fell apart again in the 75th minute, as Ahmed grabbed his second of the night with a clinical low finish from just inside the box to make it 4-0 and condemn the Lions to a crushing defeat.
Singapore will play Oman in their next match on August 14 at home, with the game scheduled to kick off at the Jalan Besar Stadium at 7.45p.m.