|FROM BISHAN STADIUM
By Teng Kiat
Home United coach Lee Lim Saeng and his Brunei DPMM counterpart Vjeran Simunic were both happy with the efforts shown by their respective teams, following their 0-0 draw on Thursday night.
Simunic was visibly pleased with his side’s performance as they extended their unbeaten streak against a “respectable” Home outfit, describing himself as being “very, very, very happy with one point”.
“Yes, I am quite satisfied [with the result],” he said at the post-match press conference. “I have so much respect for Home. We played a good game [and] it was an equal match.
“We played offensive football and had some chances to score. I am very happy not to lose for the third time [in as many matches] to Home – [they are] no more our bogey team!”
Lee was a little more reserved after the game, but was pleased that his team were doing their best to live up to the club’s philosophy of ‘fitness, discipline and commitment’.
“We wanted to win, but unfortunately we didn’t,” he admitted. “But I respect the players’ efforts. This is a new team, and the players have worked very hard with me.
“We are not perfect, but we are going on the right track- our fitness was better than our opponents’. In the first half, the players looked nervous [but in the] second half, we played better.”
Both men also expressed belief that their sides would get better as the season goes on, due to the new arrivals needing time to settle and gel with their teammates.
Pointing to the signings of four new players – Ivan Bosnjak, Stephen Auvray, Joao Moreira and Dino Drpic – as a factor, Simunic also added that he had faith in his local Bruneian players like Adi Said and Najib Tarif.
“We changed four [foreign] players [from last season], so it is difficult to incorporate and coordinate [our style of play] at the moment. The communication [between players] is still not what I wanted,” the Croatian explained.
Lee was happy with his side’s shored-up defence after witnessing a leaky backline throughout last season, and also conceded that star signing Lee Kwan Woo could improve on his debut showing.
“He can show more, but it’s just one match,” he said of the former South Korean international. “But his performance can get better.
“This is a new team that is still getting to know each other and to cope with [the playing] system. I am happy with the defence because we didn’t concede, but I hope the attack[ers] can score more goals.
“Our [style of] play now is very positive [but] we can show a higher performance, which I hope we can maintain until the end of the season.”
Simunic also declared that this positive result against a title contender gave him “power and motivation” to strive for more.
“Before, we were a small team… [but now I believe that] we can spoil the plans of the big teams like Home, Tampines and Warriors,” he proclaimed. “I am still hungry to make [achieve] something more [with DPMM].”