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Army prepare for Crown battle in Metfone C-League

Pouya Hosseini scores a penalty in Phnom Penh Crown’s 1-0 win over Soltilo Angkor at the RSN Stadium on Saturday.
Pouya Hosseini scores a penalty in Phnom Penh Crown’s 1-0 win over Soltilo Angkor at the RSN Stadium on Saturday. Sreng Meng Srun

Army prepare for Crown battle in Metfone C-League

Last season’s beaten league playoff finalists Ministry of National Defence will take on six-time champions Phnom Penh Crown at Olympic Stadium on Saturday to kick off Gameweek 2 in the Metfone C-League.

Both sides will be eager to get the best out of this early season encounter after opening their campaigns last week on winning notes.

The Armymen’s trip to Siem Reap netted them all three points against Angkor Tiger, thanks to the only goal of the match from Japanese forward Udai Ogawa in the 73rd minute.

But much as the team celebrated the victory, there were also concerns in the camp about missed opportunities.

The club’s management will be hoping for better coordination between the local players and the new overseas signings as the team will be up against much stronger opposition this time.

Crown welcomed another Siem Reap-based team, Soltilo Angkor FC, to their RSN Stadium and beat the debutants through an early penalty from Iranian import Pouya Hosseini.

Crown coach Sean Sainsbury said he was happy to see his young side win a tough game, but he thought the final pass into the box and finishing could have been sharper.

Crown will have to bring out their best against a robust Army side that has been well reinforced with talented overseas players after losing their North Korean quartet to the newly promoted Visakha.

Defending champions Boeung Ket managed to get their AFC Cup campaign back on track by beating Singapore’s Home United 3-2 on Tuesday night.

That morale-boosting win should stand them in good stead as they resume their defence of the title, having come out 4-3 winners against Asia Europe United in their opener.

Champions three times in the past six years, Boeung Ket travel to Western Stadium to face Western Phnom Penh, but given the strength of the side it is hard to see Boeung Ket running into serious trouble.

In Saturday’s third match, Soltilo will be up against Asia Europe United, who can draw a lot of comfort from their late three-goal fightback against Boeung Ket, though they ended up on the wrong side of the seven-goal affair.

Sunday’s focus will be on Visakha when they meet Angkor Tiger at Olympic Stadium. Visakha got off to a flying start in the top flight with a 4-0 win over Western last week.

But towards the end of the game they lost the services of two players to red cards and so will be determined to adopt a more disciplined approach this time round.

After last week’s goalless draw against Preah Khan Reach Svay Rieng, NagaWorld should have an easier time of things against Electricite du Cambodge.

Naga will be keen to open their winning account at EdC’s Tuol San Kae stadium.

National Police Commissary take on Preah Khan Reach Svay Rieng, who could only pick up one point from their goalless deadlock with rivals Naga last week.

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