Monday 1 February 2010

South China Claim 2010 Senior Shield

Congratulations to South China for winning the Canbo Senior Shield during the final between Kitchee and South China on Saturday 30 January 2010 at Siu Sai Wan Stadium. Attendance was 2,760 and the final score was 2-4.

Kitchee : Liang, Zicheng 24', Baruc Nsue Burrcet 53'
South China : Schutz, Tales 68', Ferreira Da Silva, Leonardo 69', Chan, Siu Ki 79', Ferreira Da Silva, Leonardo 90'

Kitchee : Liang, Zicheng 56'
South China : Chan, Siu Ki 57', Sidrailson, da Mata Ribeiro 70'

Interestingly, there were no red cards although there were two incidents that may have warranted them.

In the 32nd minute during a free kick, Kitchee defender Ubay Luzardo Santana (#5) was holding South China forward Leonardo Ferreira Da Silva (#33). Leonardo retaliated by elbowing Santana in the chin. After consulting with the AR, the Referee gave a public warning to both players. [HKRef believes Leonardo was fortunate to escape being awarded a red card for violent conduct.]

In the 74th minute (with the match delicately poised at 2-2), a long ball from the Kitchee half led to a breakaway opportunity. Kitchee captain Lo Kwan Yee (#12) raced towards the South China goal in a one-on-one situation with the goalkeeper. The South China goalkeeper Zhang Chun-hui (#23) came out of the penalty area and fouled Lo. The Referee gave a goal kick. [HKRef believes Zhang was fortunate to escape being awarded a red card for denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity to an opponent.]

Here’s how the South China Morning Post reported the match:
South China fight back to lift Shield
Chan Kin-wa
Jan 31, 2010

Unstoppable Chan Siu-ki helped South China stage a thrilling rally from two goals down to beat Kitchee 4-2 and lift the Canbo Senior Shield at Siu Sai Wan Sports Ground yesterday.

Playing in front of 2,700 spectators, the Caroliners were on the brink of defeat in the first cup final of the season. But two goals within a minute by Tales Schutz and Leonardo da Silva midway through the second half revitalised their hopes, before Chan's wonderful half-volley from 14 metres put them into a 3-2 lead. Da Silva's second goal, in stoppage time, settled matters.

"It was a hard-earned victory, and I was thinking we might have to settle for second best when we were two goals down," said Chan. "But, thanks to the hard work of my teammates, we levelled the score and then got two more goals to lift the title. It was just amazing, like achieving the impossible."

While helping his club to the first title of the season, Chan also collected two individual honours as the striker swept both the top-scorer award, with four goals, as well as the award for the tournament's most valuable player.

"I can only say I am enjoying the best phase of my career and want to help the club in this year's AFC Cup and the Hong Kong team for the East Asian Championship," he said.

Chan said he knew both Japan and South Korea would send much stronger teams to the East Asian Championship than they did to the East Asian Games, in which Hong Kong beat both sides to clinch the gold medal. However, he said he had confidence in his teammates and believed they could win again.

"No one would have expected our results at the East Asian Games, and the same thing may happen at the East Asian Championship. Who knows?" he said.

South China players will form the bulk of the Hong Kong team as they challenge the three top powers of the region - South Korea, Japan and China - in the nine-day tournament, which kicks off in Tokyo next week.

Disappointed Kitchee captain Lo Kwan-yee said he hoped his teammates would recover soon from the defeat. "The result was difficult to take, as we were leading by two goals in the second half of a cup final. But our defence was caught off-guard with the two-goal cushion and allowed them to come back, which really should not happen," said Lo, who also questioned the refereeing. "I was brought down by South China goalkeeper Zhang Chunhui in the second half and it was definitely a red card for Zhang, but the referee gave no punishment for an obvious foul."

South China convenor Steven Lo Kit-sing refused to comment on the referee's performance. "We all know the general standard of referees in Hong Kong. They all have to improve and this is the job of the Football Association," said Lo. "We had a good match today, coming back from two goals down to beat Kitchee. The victory has given us more confidence."

Here are the highlights, courtesy of SCAAwebtv (the 'non-penalty decision' incident is seen at 4:00):

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