Albirex Niigata coach Koichi Sugiyama issued a warning to the other S.League title contenders after his side’s 1-0 win over Harimau Muda at Jurong East on Tuesday evening.
Bruno Castanheira’s second-half finish was enough to lift the Japanese side to second in the table, two points behind leaders Tampines Rovers.
“Harimau is a very good team but very young too [and] they have the potential to do well,” he pointed out after the game.
“I felt the key to the game was the second ball – [in the] first half, Harimau won the battle of the second balls while we won that battle in the second half.”
This was the fifth 1-0 win of the season for Albirex, but the Japanese coach insisted he would like his team to score more goals.
“Of course I want to win by as many goals as possible,” Sugiyama admitted. “But a win is a win. I’m happy we are up there in the table.
“We are focused in winning the title.”
Meanwhile, Harimau coach Razip Ismail did not hide his disappointment after the game.
“I am disappointed with the outcome,” he remarked.
“I felt we deserved at least a point. But this is what happens when you don’t finish your chances against a good team. I felt we more than matched them but [we] just can’t score.”