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The Tanjong Pagar United coach was pleased that his players stuck to his plan, while opposite number Aide Iskandar rued his side's lapses in concentration and individual errors

In Round 9 of the S.League, the Courts Young Lions were mauled by a stronger Tanjong Pagar side 4-0 at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Wednesday night.

A hat-trick from Ismael Benahmed and a league-leading eight goal of the season from Monsef Zerka was in no way a fair score to describe the game that saw a dogged Young Lions side put on a good performance.

Jaguars coach Patrick Vallee was all smiles during the post-match conference and immediately lauded his players for sticking with the plan.

"Our main objective was to win," he remarked.

"It didn't matter how or when they scored, and as long as my players get all the three points, it was a good game."

The Frenchman never underestimated the Young Lions from the get-go, as he was seen screaming at his forces who looked a little complacent in the first half.

"At the break, I told my players to focus on their technique to make sure that every pass, cross and shot was a good one, and they did exactly that," Vallee said.

"I am very proud of my players for following my plan."

Despite the statistics showing that Tanjong Pagar has the best goal-scoring record in the league, Vallee warned that it is too soon to say if they are title contenders.

A rather dejected Aide Iskandar walked into the post-match press conference, clearly disappointed with the score.

"The score doesn't reflect well on the boys' performance as they did have moments of greatness but were unlucky not to convert," the Young Lions coach said.

"We lost because of individual errors and moments where there were lapses in concentration."

Aide also pointed out that he had to depend on a makeshift defence because he had lost several players to illness and National Service commitments.

"With only five players on the bench, I told my boys to seize the opportunity when given the chance to play, and that when you fall hard, it is the best way to learn and bounce back," he said.

Looking forward, the former Singapore international conceded that his side lost to a very good team and he would field a set of players that have displayed their hunger to play for the upcoming matches.

The Young Lions are rooted to the bottom of the league and will face a tough task against Home United next week, while the Jaguars travel to challenge Geylang International.

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