There is a few of the biggest derbies in the world;
Chiefs – Pirates (South – Afrika)
Boca Juniors – Riverplate (Argentina)
Al Ahly – Zamalek (Egypt)
Dortmunt – Schalke (Germany)
Gremio – Internacional (Brazil)
Fenerbache – Galatasaray (Turkey)
Fc Barcelona – Real Madrid (Spain)
Lazio Roma – AS Roma (Italy)
But the absolute number 1 in the world is Saigon Raiders vs – Saigon S@|NT$.
It’s kinda ironic I am writing this match report with 2 goals and 1 assist in a 4-2 game, but hey like a wise man said” It’s not about the name on your shirt, it’s about the logo on your chest”.
It started Wednesday 20:00pm when I just arrived at the Tan Son Nhat International Airport. As I just landed I took my phone with shaky hands to see the outcome of the SIFL Board chat. Why? Because the game was not 100% confirmed yet. Can you imagine, you are travelling for 22 hours and all you think about is the biggest derby of the century! Back to my phone…. Thank god YES! F*CK YES! The game is on! Saturday is f*cking Wartime! Quickly texted the Raiders Committee and Coach to confirm the game is on in the hope they would caught my message and give them extra motivation for the game during training.
Then it was just a matter of counting the days..hours… and seconds… YES! It’s Friday night.. just one more night until the game. Ok gotta rest and make sure I am sharp. We have to win this game. It’s our first game of 2019 and we can’t lose this derby! We have to maintain our top of the league position no matter what!
Saturday morning you wake up… So much energy…That feeling.. of Matchday.. Derbyday… can you imagine it feels like you can run 20 marathons, 10 triathlons and play 15 football matches in a row. You feel invincible, unconquerable and ready to get this win!
That’s the beauty about a derby, everything is just better, bigger and more beautiful. We made our debut at RMIT University. A “stadium” for all those thousands of fans, amazing dressing rooms and especially a beautiful grass pitch. With a good warm up and pep talk from coach the boys are ready to rock!
I was that sharp that I straight away won the first battle of the game ; the toss, and yes the S@|NT$ felt that one already, because they had to change half. 1-0, 1-0, 1-0 I shouted lets go boys! After kick off the Saigon Raiders pressured the S@INT$ what resulted in a throw in deep into their half. Straight away Saigon Raiders put a stamp on this game. We are here to win and nothing else. With many chances in the first 10 minutes (especially someone had a few) and a lot of pressure Saigon Raiders were dominating this game. But then the unexpected happened…. a counter by S@|NT$ on the left side…….. and here comes the cross….. what wait noo its going for goal… how?? shit no no yes it just landed in the corner of the net. Saigon Raiders zero…. Saigon S@|NT$ .. one..
But no reason for stress.. Raiders were dominating this game and continued to do so. Just 10 minutes after the first goal it was Hung (who was making his debut) with a great pass behind the defence sending Clemens away who got tackled by the S@|NT$ .. Yellow card and free kick it was. hmm what to say about the free kick? Maybe just watch it in the highlights and judge yourself. BANG 1-1. Saigon Raiders back in the game.
With a lot of substitutes and rotation Saigon Raiders kept continue to play their game. With good passing from a solid defence lead by Stephan, Hung and Scotti Ramos (who looks exactly like Sergio Ramos). After a strong 40 minutes by the Raiders the whistle blew for the end of the first half.
A pep talk by Collin Guardiola in the dressing room put the boys on sharp and ready to hit another strong half. The Raiders continued the way they start in the first half. Pressure and great passing around. Ten minutes into the second half it was Danny Chalk who was trying to make a pass into someones feet…but there it happened.. handball – Penalty Saigon Raiders! Let’s go. Someone was taking this penalty and he scored. BANG in side of the net. Saigon Raiders 2 – Saigon S$?INT$ 1.
This was definitely hurting the S$?INT$, but they did not give up. As motivated as the S$?INT$ started this game as motivated they tried to do everything within their powers to win this match. This included some rough tackles and decent attacks on their side. Unfortunately for them The Saigon Raiders are in a shape the last two years as they haven’t been before. It was a corner from myself right into the feet from the one and only Danny Chalk who volleyed it straight into the goal! What a finish, beautiful! But wait.. there is someone again who is trying to claim the goal? No no no …. This was definitely Danny’s goal! BANG. Saigon Raiders three – Saigon S$?INT$ one.. Despite the 3-1 S$?INT$ did not give up and tried to push for another goal on their side.
After another break out it was someone who entered the box and could have passed the ball to me as I was completely open, but instead he took a shot himself and missed.. and so it happened… the ball came in front of me for open goal with the most shittiest bounce you can ever think of.. and I missed. TURKEY! here you go, in your face! Instead of actually punishing someone who completely went for self success the Turkey is all mine. That’s the world of sports, you either make it or you brake it… but wait just 3 minutes later… It’s Stephan who is clearly looking for me with the free kick and finds me in a way that even David Beckham would be jealous of.. Using the cross bar so I could use the bicycle kick to destroy and kill the S$?INT$ by scoring the 4-1. For those who don’t know what a bicycle kick is, it’s just an overhead kick. Very easy! With just 5 minutes to play the S$?INT$ are now officially down and The Saigon Raiders have secured their win! Respect for S$?INT$ as they still kept pushing and even scored another goal in last minutes which lead up to a final score of Saigon Raiders, 4 – Saigon S$?INT$, 2. PAMMMM The derby number 1 in the world was a win for the Raiders! SAIGON IS RED AND IT ALWAYS WILL BE!
It is great to see so many depth in the squad, with players coming in like Bart, Florian, Danny Chalk (man of the match), Tam and of course Danny Vo (the man with the biggest Saigon Raiders hart in history). But also in the starting line with Guido and Chris who played an excellent game.
Let’s go Raiders! This is the way you get back from your Christmas holidays and this is the way we will get that title! Because we are here for the title and nothing less! Let’s a get another good training session on Wednesday and prepare ourselves for a game versus the Frenchies. Who ever is reading this match report and wants to be part of a champion team; “Being a Champion is not just thinking about it, it’s acting like it and never take no or losing for an answer” (Clemens Levert).
A big thanks to everyone who came support us! A football team is nothing without it’s 12th man.
SAIGON IS RED!