Brandon Koh with another opportunity after Hanafi had created the opening. However, his header also failed to find its mark. Brandon had an outstanding game, giving the Haitians many problems with his speed and dribbling skills. (Photo 3 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
With two minutes left on the clock, Singapore fullback Illyas Lee was sent off after pulling down Sandino Saint Jean (#11) inside the box after a breakaway. Haiti captain Daniel Gedeon (#2) then slotted his spot kick past Fashah into the bottom left corner to send the Cubs out.
“I don’t think it was a foul,” said captain Jeffrey Lightfoot when asked about the penalty. “But the game has to go on and it’s the ref’s decision. We still have one more game to play and we’ll have to stick together.”
“We didn’t take our chances,” echoed assistant coach Abdullah Noor. “We had three chances in 17 minutes and if we converted one of them, it would definitely be a different game. The boys were pressured and very tense with all the media hype.”
When asked about picking up the pieces for the next game, he added: “That’s going to be difficult. These boys are only 15 and some are only 14 plus! It’ll be a hard task but we’ll talk to them and see how we can help them come back.”
“Tonight wasn’t our night,” commented Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS), Dr Vivian Balakrishnan. “First half, we couldn’t settle down with the usual rhythm but the second half we came out fighting and but we just couldn’t convert that goal.”
“This is life. This is sport. Nothing goes according to plan. But we have to keep trying and I am sure the boys will leave this place holding their heads high. I am very proud of our boys,” he added.
“It’s never easy to lose,” said Football Association of Singapore (FAS) president Mr Zainudin Nordin. “Remember these are young boys and have done their best. In the end winning and losing is part of learning. We have confidence that they will bounce back for the bronze medal.”
When asked about how the players will cope with the added media attention, he said: “If I had my way, I’ll put a media ban on them but you guys want to talk to them and see them! They will have to learn and cope as professionals and balance between what’s good and what’s not.”
The Cubs still have plenty to fight for as they will take on Montenegro again in the bronze medal play-off on Wednesday, August 25, 6pm, at the same venue.
For Singapore fixtures and results, go to our 2010 YOG fixtures page
Jonathan Tan (Singapore #11) let fly a shot that was on target but was saved by the Haitian keeper. (Photo 4 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
Brandon Koh tracks back and denies forward Carlos Gluce (Haiti #7) a goal-scoring opportunity. (Photo 5 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
Ammirul rises to meet a corner but could not connect with it. (Photo 6 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
Illyas Lee (Singapore #14) bundles Sandino Saint Jean (Haiti #11) over in the penalty box. Haiti received a penalty and Illyas was sent off. (Photo 7 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
Fashah Rosedin (Singapore #1) guessed the right way but could not stop Daniel Gedeon from scoring the second goal for Haiti. (Photo 8 © Les Tan/Red Sports)
For more photos, go to the next page