October 29, Tuesday, 7.30p.m., Hougang Stadium
Geylang International continue their push for the summit of Tier 2 as they travel to Hougang Stadium this week in the first game of Round 26.
With only two more games left to the end of the season, the Eagles are three points behind leaders Warriors FC and two behind second-placed Brunei DPMM.
Vedhamuthu Kanan's men are unbeaten in their last three league games, having won the last two of those with 3-0 and 1-0 victories against Warriors and Courts Young Lions respectively.
A win here would see them at least move into second place, but the Cheetahs will not be in a charitable mood as they are aiming to finish as high as possible themselves.
Amin Nasir's charges bounced back from a 1-0 defeat in Brunei DPMM in style with a 4-1 hammering of an understrength Harimau Muda B side in their last game, and a win here will bring them to within one point of Geylang.
For Geylang, the attacking trio of Yasir Hanapi, Jozef Kaplan and Stefan Milojevic have been in fine form of late. Yasir is flying down the wings and it was his astute, outside-of-the-boot pass that set up Jalal for the winner against Young Lions. Skipper Kaplan is the side's talisman and will be looking to pull clear in the Golden Boot race, currently being tied on 13 with three others. Milojevic is usually his partner in crime, and the striker can be deadly on his day.
Kanan's decision to thrust youngsters like Wahyudi Wahid and Wyldan Wisam into first-team action this season and slowly blood them in has reaped dividends in the latter stages of the campaign, as they repay him with some solid performances.
Meanwhile, Amin will have to decide whether to start forward Basit Hamid after he came on to score a superb lob within seconds of coming on against the Malaysians, before adding another to seal the win. The 27-year-old offers a different dimension in attack to Guinean Mamadou Diallo, who came off after feeling unwell.
In midfield, Azhar Sairudin makes them tick with his incisive passing, which was on display against the Young Tigers. His partner, Thomas Beattie, sweeps up alongside him and tidies things, while flankers Jerome Baker and Fazli Jaffar impressed with their pace and crossing.
The Eagles triumphed 1-0 on the same ground the last time these two sides met in the league and while they will be happy with a repeat of that scoreline, the Cheetahs will not make life easy for them as they look to end their home campaign with victory.