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  • June 4, 2013
  • • 17:30
  • • Thuwanna YTC Stadium, Yangon

Tampines left-back Shaiful Esah scored a trademark freekick against Myanmar

Stange starts Singapore reign with victory in Myanmar

Tampines left-back Shaiful Esah scored a trademark freekick against Myanmar


The German oversaw a comfortable victory for the Lions in his first official game thanks to two quick first-half goals, and handed 17-year-old Adam Swandi his debut

By Khalis Rifhan

Bernd Stange started his tenure as the new Singapore national team coach on a winning note as the Lions clinched a 2-0 victory over Myanmar at the Thuwanna Youth Training Center on Tuesday.

Both goals came in the first half, courtesy of a strike each from Tampines Rovers duo Khairul Amri and Shaiful Esah.

With captain Shahril Ishak not available for selection due to an injury, the responsibility of leadership on the field was handed over to Indra Sahdan, who made a return to the national set-up after a three-year absence.

The visitors came with a game plan and they executed it right from the start as they displayed their attacking prowess, making use of the flanks and supplying extra men in attack with right-back Faritz Hameed constantly making overlapping runs.

The Lions duly took the lead in the 10th minute when Amri broke away from his markers and nodded the ball home from a cross by Faritz.

It was soon 2-0 after Shaiful sent a freekick straight into the top corner, leaving goalkeeper Phyo Aung with no chance.

It was not a one-sided match as Myanmar had opportunities of their own and went forward on the counter-attack, but they found it hard to penetrate a disciplined backline led by Baihakki Khaizan and Safuwan Baharudin.

Singapore came close to a third in the 27th minute but Amri could only see his stinging shot ricochet off the post.

The second half saw Stange giving debuts to first starlet Adam Swandi after the break, then defender Shariff Samat 20 minutes from time.

Myanmar could have reduced the deficit barely a minute after the restart as Baihakki conceded a penalty, but Izwan did well to palm the spot-kick away.

The hosts ended the match with 10 men after referee Mongkol Chai was left with no option but to show the red card to Yan Aung Win, who had foolishly kicked Shaiful on the head after tackling the defender.

Singapore will next travel to Vientiane for a friendly match against Laos on June 7.