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Singapore Cup

  • October 3, 2012
  • • 19:45
  • • Choa Chu Kang Stadium, Singapore
  • Referee: K. Kalimuthu
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Singapore Cup semi-final preview: SAF FC vs Gombak United

Singapore Cup semi-final preview: SAF FC vs Gombak United

Zeng Liwei

The league's most successful side will hope for first blood in the first leg against an unfancied opponent who have defied the odds so far to reach the semi-finals

September was a thrilling month of S.League action where we saw the title race take many twists and turns. That has to take a backseat for now in the month of October as we look forward to the crowning of the a new Singapore Cup champion.

The final will be played on October 28 but before that, there is the small matter of the semi-finals.

Both ties will take place over two gruelling legs to be played within three days of each other.

First up, 2008 winners SAFFC will host Gombak United on Wednesday night at their beloved Choa Chu Kang Stadium

Both sides reached this stage after thrilling quarter-final affairs - an 81st-minute freekick from Tatsuro Inui in the second leg enabled the Warriors to overcome holders Home United 5-4 on aggregate, while in similar fashion a 89th-minute Hafiz Rahim freekick saw the Bulls edge past last season's semi-finalists Hougang United.

"We performed well in the last three games although results didn't exactly go our way," said Richard Bok of his team's slump in form.

"Indeed it'll be a tough game with Gombak in good form, but I hope my players have the desire to go to the final and are able to rise to the occasion, considering this is our only chance to win a trophy."

With no away goals rule in the competition, Bok revealed he will not be going for broke on Wednesday.

"Anything can still happen after the first leg so I just hope that we get a positive result to take to Jurong West," he told Goal.com Singapore.

"We're an attacking team but we also need to keep it tight at the back. Most importantly, we have to be clinical as we have not been taking our chances in our last few games."

For the visitors, reaching the last four is already an achievement and this represents a valuable chance to get their first silverware since their League Cup triumph in 2008.

However, for the home side, the significance goes up a few notches - a chance to salvage a disappointing league season, a chance to claim their first silverware since the 2009 league title and to sign off head coach Richard Bok's seven-year reign on a high note.

In any other season, the Bulls should be easy fodder for the Warriors but so far in 2012, the two sides are seperated only by a point in the league.

First-year coach K Balagumaran has drilled  his charges into a solid unit who have recorded just a solitary loss from their last 12 games in all competitions, in the process taking points off Tampines Rovers and Brunei DPMM and claiming the scalp of Harimau Muda along the way.

Although they have a day less of rest than SAFFC, it is worthy to note how the Bulls made light work of the Young Tigers on Sunday evening while their opponents laboured to a 2-2 draw at Hougang Stadium 24 hours earlier.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Warriors

Gombak United

Wins
4
1
0
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Warriors FC WAR
Warriors FC Warriors
Draw
Gombak United FC GOM
Gombak United FC Gombak United
80%
20%

Top 3 Predictions

Warriors FC WAR
6 - 0
Gombak United FC GOM
Warriors FC WAR
7 - 7
Gombak United FC GOM
Warriors FC WAR
2 - 1
Gombak United FC GOM

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