HONG KONG—The final of the HKFA Cup was played last Sunday May 17 at Mong Kok Stadium as the Premier League teams’ s domestic season came to a close, except for playoff matches. Kitchee ran out Cup winners, with a 2-nil defeat of Eastern, with both goals being scored by Juan Belencoso in extra time after the original ninety minutes ended scoreless.
In the first division, Lucky Mile won 2-1 against Shatin, HKFC drew 2-all against Kwun Tong, Citizen won 6-1 against Happy Valley, Southern won 7-nil against Metro Gallery Sun Source, Double Flower won 3-1 against Wanchai, Kwai Tsing won 3-1 againstYau Tsim Mong, and Tai Chung were 3-2l victors over Tuen Mun.
In the HKFC to Kwun Tong match on Saturday May 16, the game was still in its first minute when Poon Kwok-tak put Kwun Tong into the lead and then Desbriel equalized with a power drive from a free kick. But soon after Kwun Tong scored another, this time by Ng Hong-lun from another set-piece, until Desbriel rescued his side off a header.
Ironically, it was Desbriel’s first and last goal of the season as he returns home for a long holiday with the Frenchman’s future and the club’s promotion bid to the BOCG Life Hong Kong Premier League still up in the air.
Club captain Brendan Beni was both overjoyed and slightly dismayed that his side had let in such an early goal with the game less than a minute into play but praised Kwun Tong for their audacity but also felt his players had done well to bring the game back on level terms.
“That (goal) did catch us by surprise!” said Beni, “I think it was probably 50 seconds or so into the game,” he said, while praising Kwun Tong for their attacking play against a superior taller Club side.
For Kwun Tong skipper, Leung Man-him, the result was a much-needed confidence booster as the side rebuilds for next season after the result left them trailing in mid-table.
“For us, this can be considered a fantastic result,” said Leung, whose side was left languishing to Club on a 7-0 first round note.
“Today’s result shows we have improved but then again, it may be an end-of-season issue for Club as they seemed to be missing some key players and lacked enthusiasm,” Leung said, while praising his side for their consistent play, which he considered to be a much-improved performance from their last outing against the home side.
“In many parts we can thank a restructuring as we returned to basics and today showed that, as we played with more consistency, be it from attack to defense,” he said.
After playing 27 matches, Metro Gallery Sun Source are champions with 69 points, with HKFC second with 59 points and a better goal difference, Southern are third with 59 points, and Yau Tsim Mong are fourth on 58 points. There is one round of matches to be played.
Wing Yee are champion of the second division with 59 points, whilst Mutual are runners-up with 47 points.
In third division matches, Tung Sing were 2-nil winners over GFC Friends, St Joseph’s won 4-2 against Telecom, Fu Moon were beaten 5-1 by Ornament, Islands were 5-2 victors over KCC, Rainbow Legend Northern District won 2-nil against Lung Moon, and Fukien were 1-nil winners against KCDRSC.
Tung Sing are third division champions with 69 points, with Central & Western district runners-up with 60 points with one game outstanding.
Allan Jackson has been involved in soccer for more than 40 years as a player, referee, administrator and freelance writer. In addition to the photo, Eddie So contributed to this article.