Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Loyola Meralco Sparks in high spirits for Singapore Cup by rick olivares

Loyola Meralco Sparks in high spirits for Singapore Cup
by rick olivares

The Loyola Meralco Sparks are in good spirits in Singapore. They had not played well in the last few weeks. In doing so, they have dropped out of the race for the UFL title.

Hoping to salvage a trophy-less season, the Sparks look forward to making some serious headway in the 2013 Singapore Cup. The initial assignment in the tournament is against the Malaysian U-19 team, Harimau Muda B, that is hoping to gain a lot of experience by playing in the S.League. This current season, the Young Tigers are in fifth place in the 12-team standings with a 6-2-6 record.

The Young Tigers play a compact 4-4-2 formation but have trouble scoring. Harimau Muda B has scored 17 goals in the S. League but has also conceded 17.

“We cannot take them lightly,” warned Loyola assistant coach Gil Talavera said. “Last year, Geylang was at the bottom of the S. League but they nearly won our match. Even the last match against Gombak United, another midcard team, was a difficult one to play as the Sparks lost 2-nil (Gombak has since pulled out of the league citing financial difficulties).

Forward Phil Younghusband expressed excitement in returning to the tournament: “It’s good to be back. It’s always good to back in Singapore. There’s a more sense of professionalism being in a hotel, being isolated just with your teammates so you have nice facilities and like that. We also came back because of how well we did last year (in the Singapore Cup). And we’re excited to play. Obviously, with the disappointed of the league, we still want to prove something. So this gives us the opportunity.”

Midfielder/defender Simon Greatwich who has come into this current UFL season in superb shape concurred: “it is a good opportunity for us to get outside the country. We haven’t been doing well in the UFL so it’s a fresh start. It’s a one-off game and everyone’s excited to prove our critics wrong.”

“We’re now more aware of the level of the other teams. Coming out through three or four trips last year after progressing through the rounds so we got an idea of the competition and the level of the Singapore league.”

New addition and veteran internationalist Armand Del Rosario couldn’t contain his excitement about being in the Singapore Cup, “I’m excited. Nice to be here with the guys. It’s like being back with the national team. The team is together everyday bonding. We’re relaxed and having fun. We are in a position to do well.”

“Now we have to go out and get a good result,” summed up Younghusband.

The Sparks play Harimau Muda at 730pm at the Jalan Besar Stadium.


Additional reading: Loyola returns to the 2013 Singapore Cup

At Changi International Airport with Freddy Gonzalez and Bob Guerrero.

At Jalan Besar Stadium, Saturday night, with Louie Potenciano, Carlo Rodriguez, Vince Santos, and Gil Talavera.

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