Football: Stags out of Asian Champions League

Tampines Rovers crashed out of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League qualifying round after losing 2-0 to Global FC.
Tampines Rovers crashed out of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League qualifying round after losing 2-0 to Global FC. PHOTO: TAMPINES ROVERS FOOTBALL CLUB/FACEBOOK

It was deja vu for Tampines Rovers as they lost 2-0 to Global FC in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League qualifying round yesterday.

The five-time S-League champions also fell at this stage last year, losing 1-3 to India's Mohun Bagan.

Ahmad Azzawi and Misagh Bahadoran struck after half-time at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila to eliminate the Stags.

Striker Khairul Amri missed a penalty with the score at 2-0. The Stags will now compete in the group stage of the second-tier AFC Cup.

There, they are drawn with Malaysia's Felda United, the Philippines' Ceres La Salle and Vietnam's Hanoi T&T.

Tampines defender Fahrudin Mustafic said: "We played well in the first half and should have gone up. After the first goal we tried to come back but Global are very quick on the counter and got the second.

"We have a tough AFC Cup group and we must correct our mistakes and be ready for that challenge."

Tampines had faced Global FC over two legs in last year's Singapore Cup. Both matches were played here and the Stags won 5-2 on aggregate.

At the post-match press conference, Philippines national striker Bahadoran said: "We lost twice to Tampines in Singapore but I know we can win here. The best strategy to play against Tampines is to play short passing because their central defenders are strong in the air. "

Global FC will now face Australia's Brisbane Roar in the next qualifying round on Jan 31.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 25, 2017, with the headline 'Stags out of Asian Champions League'. Print Edition | Subscribe