Singapore Cup: Jaguars eye Cup run

Singapore Cup: Jaguars eye Cup run
Tanjong Pagar United coach Patrick Vallee (centre, facing camera) speaking to his players at a training session held on 17 February 2014. The team, who have been beefed up by a number of useful signings, aims to finish in the top three of the 2014 Great Eastern-Yeo’s S.League season come November.

PRELIMINARY ROUND

TANJONG PAGAR v HOUGANG

(Tonight, 7.30pm, Queenstown Stadium)

Less than seven months ago, Tanjong Pagar United surpassed everyone's expectations when they reached the RHB Singapore Cup final.

The Jaguars capitulated 4-1 to Home United in the final, but they had a season to remember, finishing in the top half of the Great Eastern-Yeo's S.League after finishing second last in 2011 and 2012.

This term, however, almost everything has gone pear-shaped for Patrick Vallee's men.

They have won just two of 13 league matches and are currently 10th in the 12-team S.League, just four points ahead of rock-bottom team Harimau Muda B.

So, tonight's Singapore Cup clash against Hougang United comes as a welcome respite from their woes in the league.

Tanjong Pagar skipper Hafiz Osman said he and his teammates are keen to do well in the Cup competition, to salvage their season.

"Reaching the final last season was great," said the 30-year-old defender.

"But we want to show people it wasn't a one-off (achievement).

"We want to continue on from last year, and maybe this time go all the way and win the Cup."

A bold target, considering the Jaguars' struggles.

But Hafiz, who is suspended tonight after yellow cards accumulated from last season, is adamant his team have what it takes.

The ex-Singapore international and 2007 Suzuki Cup winner said: "Maybe some people think we have given up on our season already.

They're wrong.

"Okay, let's be honest, we are too far away in the league to challenge for the title.

"But our confidence and belief are still there. We're sticking with one another - we know we have a squad of quality players.

"The Singapore Cup is our only chance for silverware this season, so we won't let it go."

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