2017 Singapore S-League
  • Lion City Sailors (33', 70')
  • Geylang International (46')

Home United win, Stipe Plazibat moves to 25 goals

Croatian hot shot Stipe Plazibat took a step closer to winning the 2017 S.League Golden Boot after scoring from a brilliant free kick to help Home United defeat Geylang International 2-1 at Bishan Stadium on Saturday night.

The wonder strike took him to 25 league goals, two more than nearest challenger Tsubasa Sano from Albirex Niigata (S), who scored four times on Friday to seal a second successive title for the White Swans.

Plazibat's partner-in-chief Faris Ramli grabbed the winning goal late in the game after Gabriel Quak had restored parity for Geylang early in the second half.

Home had started off the brighter of the two sides. Izzdin Shafiq's 20-yard shot was parried by Syazwan Buhari, before Plazibat fired into the side netting from a tight angle.

Geylang gradually settled into the game. Shawal Anuar's fierce volley was pushed away by national No. 1 Hassan Sunny, before Costa Rican forward Victor Coto headed just over from Faritz Hameed's right-wing cross.

Home would find the breakthrough on 35 minutes, with Plazibat thumping home a stunning free kick from the edge of the area.

The 28-year-old then had two opportunities to double the advantage before the break, but spurned both.

Geylang coach Noor Ali reacted by making a couple of substitutions at the break, which proved to work like a treat as the Eagles levelled matters just a minute into the second half.

Quak cut inside his man after racing onto a excellent through ball, and proceeded to fire a powerful shot past Hassan into the bottom left corner.

Home could have retaken the lead on 63 minutes when Plazibat put Faris through on goal, but the latter poked wide with just Syazwan to beat.

Nonetheless, the 25-year-old would redeem himself just seven minutes later, as his low shot from inside the box trickled into the bottom left corner, proving to be the match winner.

Geylang went agonisingly close to a second equaliser 10 minutes before the end when Shawal steered the ball past an onrushing Hassan, only to see Aqhari Abdullah get back in time to clear off the line.

The Eagles will now have to wait until the final round of fixtures to see if they can seal fourth spot.

On the other hand, Home are already assured of third position, and a spot in next season's AFC Cup.

The S.League gives way to the international break, with the Singapore national team playing Lebanon in a friendly on Nov. 9 before hosting Bahrain in a crucial 2019 Asian Cup qualifier five days later.

Both games will be played at the National Stadium in Singapore Sports Hub.

Home United: Hassan Sunny (GK, C), Aqhari Abdullah, Irfan Fandi, Hariss Harun, Juma'at Jantan (Amiruldin Asraf 88'), Christopher van Huizen (Shamil Sharif 70'), M. Anumanthan (Iqram Rifqi 46'), Izzdin Shafiq, Adam Swandi, Faris Ramli, Stipe Plazibat

Geylang International: Syazwan Buhari (GK), Faritz Hameed, Yuki Ichikawa, Anders Aplin, Darren Teh (Al-Qaasimy Rahman 46'), Isa Halim (C) (Safirul Sulaiman 46'), Nor Azli Yusoff (Ifwat Ismail 46'), Ricardo Sendra, Gabriel Quak, Shawal Anuar, Victor Coto