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Pre-Match Warm Ups: Hougang united vs Tanjong Pagar united

By: Kingkikilover10 | 17 August 2023

Ok let’s start by saying that the previous game was not up to our expectations, but this game would be a good match to help our boys regain some of their confidence ahead of the cup campaigns, hopefully. A preview of our previous game against the sailors were discussed here and on Sailorfantalk too. And granted, that is if we are able to get 3 points on Saturday and to that I’m quite confident, so let us delve into another battle of the cats.

Past form against Tanjong Pagar United:

We have a 50% win record against the Jaguars and let’s recap on what happened in two of those games played earlier this season. Personally for me I remembered having a heart attack in our first clash with the jaguars this season with them beating us 2-1, in all honesty, it was a heartbreaking game and while we were playing the more possession-based ball game under coach Firkas, the game winner scored by Khairul Amri almost made me pass out in the stadium.

But what we did do well, was our next meeting at Jurong East stadium, we would see a resurgent Hougang side. The triumph in Jurong would be the second win that we have under Coach Marko and the second game in our somewhat impressive 4-game win streak.

Current form from both sides:

Based on our recent form, we have just come of of a loss which ended our 4 game win streak (deja vu?). And if we follow the "four-game" pattern that we inherited this season, then we would go on to lose our next few games till we get back on another 4 game win streak. Haha. But I am quite confident though, that we can pull out of this game unscathed.

Hougang United and Tanjong Pagar United's past five matches statistics
Image credit to Sofascore

Also, while Tanjong Pagar United’s form doesn’t look too convincing they have had quite decent performances despite the unfavorable results and that goes to show how much we need to be focused on every game no matter the form of the opponents. This is because if you look at the past 5 matches displayed here, the Jags have managed to score at least 1 goal in every single match.

Heck! I even remembered watching the game where they played against the Sailors. They actually put up quite a good fight, the game ended 3-2 and honestly, they should have gotten at least a point out of that game, even with heavy hitters like Tampines Rovers and Albirex Niigata, they have hit the net at least once.

I’m not saying the match against the Jaguars will be difficult or saying we aren't the favorites but I would like to bring to light the fact that despite the poor results at the end of the 90, they still can pack a punch and that’s up to our midfield as well as our defense to figure out how the scoreline looks.

Team selection worries:

In all honesty, as a newer Hougang United and SPL fan this part makes my head hurt and I wish I could wholeheartedly predict the starting lineup for both teams but I'm often just a little off. Nevertheless, if you have already reached this part of the article I think you would still want to hear my thoughts.

Let's start from our goalkeeping situation and despite the good argument made in our tactical review after the match against the sailors: that Zainol should be given a chance to start, I don’t think anything is gonna change here for the most part, so yep.

And in defense, here I am not sure whether after the performance against the Sailors, Nazrul would still start but I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts again because of an absolute banger of a game he had in our 3-1 win against the Jaguars the last time around despite the fact that yes, he didn't start as a right back and in fact was as a right winger. He was often found rampaging opponent’s defenses up high and showed what type of attacking intent he has on the ball. Also, not much has been heard about Abdil’s fitness so regarding him starting it’s pretty much a gray area.

Then can we safely say our back-line would be unchanged from our last match? Probably. Unless Nazrul starts up top on the right or leaves the starting lineup causing Jordan to step in at left back. This will shift Taka and Kuri back to their usual centerback pairing and Anders will be back at right back (which does not seem too bad at all).

In midfield would Shahdan have his first start in striking orange? Hopefully, and it seems probable also because of his decent first outing last Sunday. And Zul? Although the previous game was probably one of his worst performances in my books I think it's without a doubt the skipper retains his spot.

Now upfront, if Jordan comes back into the mix, we can see him filling up that U-23 spot which means apart from Louka, someone else like Gabby can step into that right wing position that Louka has started in. Ok that’s a little confusing so let’s put it in the picture based on the previous game.

In essence that would be how our lineup might look and it isn’t too much of a change to be frank.(pictured below)

Tactical setup for Hougang United ahead of the match against Tanjong Pagar United
Image made using

Flipping things to the Jaguars after watching a few of their games here and there in my free time and talking to RisingJaguars from instagram, he noted that both Shakir and Blake are not up to 100% fitness, It's worrying for a Tanjong Pagar United fan if you ask me, especially when they have just 1 cleansheet this SPL season.

A closing statement:

I realized I haven’t talked about Maksi or Kiki a ton in this preview but is there much to talk about after the performance against the Sailors? Ok, but seriously I hope to see more of Kiki being deployed centrally because that’s where he is more effective in my opinion. But being the class player that he is, a wider role isn’t going to stop him.

Also did we not mention how Maksimovic has yet to play against Tanjong Pagar United? The mobile Maksimovic title is tasty and he deserves it, he has the ability to cause problems for opposing center backs and we hope to see more from him in this upcoming game.

Tanjong Pagar United are a team who like to dish-out passes to their wingers hoping for them to take an early shot to test goalkeepers hoping to hit the back of the net or just to get a touch on the ball from a rebound. This is where I think importantly, we need to be more defensively aware. Small errors made when trying to navigate within our box would be fatal to say the least. In midfield we should aim to keep our passes sweet and simple, let’s string up passes properly and give the Jaguars a good fight as usual. Hougang united vs Tanjong Pagar united. Come on Hougang United, let’s end the season strong! Satu Hati Satu Hougang!

— Send your match predictions in the comments section!

Happy Fans of Hougang United including the hougang hools
image credit: @hougang_hools on instagram


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Aug 24, 2023
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Aug 18, 2023
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3-0 to the Cheetahs!!!

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