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Darren Stewart: There is nothing to say about the Plate

Darren Stewart: There is nothing to say about the Plate

Zeng Liwei

The Tigers' coach was blunt with his views on the Plate competition despite his team's progress to the final

The Plate competition was newly created for the League Cup this season, allowing the teams that's finish last in the group stages to play on.

But for Balestier Khalsa coach, Darren Stewart, the competition meant little more than an opportunity to keep the players fit for the league campaign.

“I am happy that we have another game to play," said Stewart.

"We are not planning to win this Plate competition. We are using this to prepare for the S.League.

“We were in the League Cup to win the Cup but we got knocked out, so for me, it does not mean anything. There is nothing to say about the Plate, it is just another game.

“Here we are playing for prize money in the Plate final and teams like Home United that advanced further than us in the Cup, will be getting nothing.

When asked about his thoughts on the Plate final on Friday against Courts Young Lions,  Darren reiterated that it was of no significance to himself and the club.

“Friday's game means nothing to me," was his blunt reply.

"It is just a game where the players and I are happy that we have another game to play.’

Woodlands Wellington assistant coach Clement Teo echoed Darren sentiments on the Plate competition albeit in a much milder tone.

“I think that this Plate competition is good as without this, we would not have been playing and how long must the team rest till our next league game?” said the Rams' number two.

“It is no use if we prepare for the S.League by playing against amateur clubs in the National Football League.”

Despite the loss and the missed the chance to play in the Plate final, Teo felt that the competition has given his players a chance to gain more experience and learn from their mistake in past matches: “A number of them have improved and one of them is our rightback, Danny Chew."

"Prior to this, he was not even playing in the NFL leagues apart from social league. As you can see, opponents had a hard time going past him.