RHB Singapore Cup: Home aim for a double

SINGAPORE - They missed out on the big prize this season when they finished second behind great eastern- Yeo's S-league champions tampines Rovers.

But Home United will be looking to get over their disappointment by beating Tanjong Pagar United to claim the 2013 RHB Singapore Cup.

The Protectors will be gunning for a double celebration as their Prime League side face Sporting Westlake in the Singapore FA Cup final, which is the curtain-raiser to the Singapore Cup final.

The Bishan Stadium outfit have certainly enjoyed a successful year, especially at youth level.

Home's Prime League, Under-14 and U-16 sides were crowned champions of their respective leagues while the U-18s emulated the senior squad by claiming second place.

While he still longs for the big prize of a league title, Home head coach Lee Lim Saeng believes winning the cup will give his side the perfect springboard for their 2014 campaign.

"I feel very sorry for the club because we couldn't be league champions this year, but I must say thanks to the players because they showed great support and patience," said the former South Korean World Cup player, who guided Home to the Singapore Cup in 2011.

"The club are still waiting for a championship and I really want to win the RHB Cup because we'll be able to qualify for the AFC Cup and challenge stronger teams.

"We can be a bit more ambitious when it comes to challenging for the league next year and I believe it will be big boost to the players.

"We could not be champions this season, so we need to win and I'm also looking forward to a win for our Prime League team."

While Home's Prime League boys will be up against more experienced opponents in their final, coach Bernard Lan believes his side have been galvanised by their tough route to the final.

After negotiating tricky ties against Geylang International and reigning FA Cup champions Balestier Khalsa, the young Protectors overcame the National Football Academy U-17s in the semifinal with a late goal despite being reduced to 10 men.

Lan, who has been with Home United for 13 years, said: "The boys are fired up and they trained on Deepavali even though it was a public holiday.


"Some of the boys will be playing their last year in the Prime League. Some want to create history by being the first Home United Prime League team to win the FA Cup. We are up for it, even though Sporting Westlake have some experienced players who have played in the S-League before.

"If our boys can put in 100 per cent, we will have a good chance."

With Home's youth system in such good health, Lee believes Home are definitely going in the right direction.

"I'm very interested in improving the young players at the club," said the former defender.

"The club are also building up their youth academy, which is definitely good for the young players.

"It is good for the club and I believe there is a bright future for Home United and Singapore football."

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