National Team - Lions ● Jun 07, 2024

Post-Match Report: FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027 Qualifier – Singapore vs. Korea Republic (6 June 2024)

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Singapore’s Ikhsan Fandi and Korea Republic’s Jung Wooyoung in action, June 2024. 

 

SINGAPORE 6 JUNE 2024 – It was always going to be a daunting task to begin with as Singapore squared off against a technically superior Korea Republic side at the Singapore National Stadium. The venue was packed to its capacity with 49,097 fervent supporters, but the home team, coached by Tsutomu Ogura, ultimately were unable to withstand the relentless pressure from Kim Do-hoon’s well-drilled squad.

 

The match essentially was a showcase for the clinical finishing and tactical discipline of Korea Republic. Captain Son Heung-min, a standout performer, orchestrated multiple attacks that broke through Singapore’s defence. His relentless drive from the left flank and powerful shots not only resulted in a hat-trick but also created opportunities for his teammates. Notably, Son’s shot in the 9th minute, though initially parried by Hassan Sunny, led to Lee Kang-in’s opener, setting the tone for the match.

 

Singapore’s Taufik Suparno and Korea Republic’s Kim Jin-su in action, June 2024. 

 

Singapore struggled to cope with Korea Republic’s sharp passing and off the ball runs as the visitors probed time and time again. In the 20th minute, Joo Min-kyu found himself unmarked in the box and headed home a pinpoint cross, doubling the visitors’ advantage. Singapore’s midfield, anchored by Hariss Harun, faced immense pressure, as the Lions collapsed to three quick fire goals within the span of three incredible minutes. Son started the barrage when he scored in the 54th minute after a mazy run from the left flank. Lee got his second of the night when he was teed up by Joo a minute later before Son made it five goals without reply in the 56th minute; the Spurs forward fizzing a shot from outside the penalty box into the far corner for his second goal of the night.

 

In an attempt to stem the flow of goals, Ogura introduced several substitutions in the 61st minute. Taufik Suparno, Faris Ramli, Ilhan Fandi, and Amirul Adli were brought on to inject fresh energy and resilience. Despite these changes, Korea Republic maintained their high tempo, and substitutes Hwang Hee-chan and Bae Jun-jo continued to pressure Singapore’s defence, adding two more goals in the closing stages.

 

Singapore’s Ilhan Fandi in action, June 2024.

 

Despite the scoreline, Singapore had moments where they threatened on the counterattack. However, their inability to deliver the final ball and convert possession into tangible chances left them scoreless. The match was a stark reminder of the areas that the Lions need to improve on, particularly in closing down the spaces and capitalising on the limited opportunities that the opponent presented to them.

 

Ogura acknowledged the gulf in class between the teams during his post-match comments: “So many people came today to watch the game, but we could not show our football. Of course, Korea was a different class. We need to move on to the next game, we cannot give up and instead we must try to have much more improvement.”

 

Singapore: Hassan Sunny (GK), Ryhan Stewart (Ilhan Fandi 62’), Christopher Van Huizen (Glenn Kweh 80’), Lionel Tan (Amirul Adli 62’), Safuwan Baharudin, Hariss Harun (C), Song Uiyoung (Faris Ramli 62’), Harhys Stewart, Shah Shahiran, Hami Syahin (Taufik Suparno 62’), Ikhsan Fandi
Unused subs: Hairul Syirhan (GK),  Zharfan Rohaizad (GK), Fairuz Fazli, Nur Adam Abdullah, Daniel Goh, Joshua Pereira

 

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FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION OF SINGAPORE

 

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