2021-22 HKFA Sapling Cup – BC Rangers 2:0 HK U23
BC Rangers met HK U23 at Mong Kok Stadium on Wednesday night for HKFA Sapling Cup. BC Rangers got a 2:0 victory over HK U23.
BC Rangers and HK U23 squared off in Mongkok Stadium on a chilly Wednesday evening for the latest Sapling Cup fixture. BC Rangers striker Leandro Basan continued his red-hot scoring form in the early season by netting a crucial double, leading BC Rangers past HK U23 through a 2:0 victory on the evening.
Young HK U23 managed to fire the first shot of the game. On the 4th minute, Sebastian Buddle picked up the ball near the top of the BC Rangers penalty area and pulled the trigger, only to fire the ball wide off target.
BC Rangers got into the action and knocked on the HK U23 door on the 7th minute. Cheng Tsz-sum floated a dangerous free-kick into the HK U23 penalty area. Ryota Hayashi connected with a leaping header but could not generate enough power on his effort to beat HK U23 goalkeeper Pong Cheuk-hei.
On the 18th minute, BC Rangers’ Walter Junior knocked a dangerous cross deep into the HK U23 box. Lau Chi-lok nodded the ball at the back-post but sent it wide off the intended target.
It was still BC Rangers afterwards. On the 20th minute, Charles Yeung’s cross from the left side found teammate Walter Junior inside the HK U23 penalty area. Junior shook off some tight marking from several HK U23 defenders, only to send the ball over the crossbar.
BC Rangers gradually took over the game and continued to lay pressure towards the HK U23 goal. On the 29th minute, Charles Yeung penetrated the left wing and delivered a low cross towards the middle. Leandro Basan fired a one-timer towards the HK U23 net but saw his low drive easily smothered by goalkeeper Pong Cheuk-hei.
BC Rangers finally opened the score on the 34th minute. Leandro Basan headed on a teammate’s cross and allowed the ball to drop at the back-post. Walter Junior righted himself and drilled the ball home, putting BC Rangers in front 1:0.
HK U23 nearly tied the game on the other end. Sebastian Buddle fired a delicate sweet shot from the left flank. The ball looked set to enter the net through the far corner, only to be headed away by Ryota Hayashi at the very last moment. The first half eventually ended with BC Rangers enjoying a 1:0 lead over HK U23.
BC Rangers almost expanded its lead early in the second half. On the 48th minute, Kim Minkyu sent the ball towards the middle but saw his cross headed away by a HK U23 player. However, the ball hit BC Rangers’ Leandro Basan and went straight back towards the HK U23 net. Goalkeeper Pong Cheuk-hei pulled off a superb save and tipped the ball over the crossbar.
On the 50th minute, HK U23 came up with rare scoring chance. Sebastian Buddle found enough daylight on the left side of the BC Rangers penalty area and pulled the trigger, only to smash the ball wide.
Afterwards, BC Rangers produced back-to-back scoring chances. First up, Jesse Yu delivered a peach cross and found teammate Lo Kam-wang inside the HK U23 box. Lo belted a right-footer but saw his shot rung off the goal-post and stayed out of the net.
Moments later, Walter Junior flew down the right wing before sending the ball to the HK U23 goal-mouth. Goalkeeper Pong Cheuk-hei managed to pave the ball away with a full-stretch effort. BC Rangers’ Tse Long-him stepped up and unleashed a quick shot but sent the ball over the crossbar from point-blank distance.
BC Rangers made it 2:0 on the 64th minute. Tse Long-hin’s smartly taken free-kick was headed back to the goal-mouth by Kim Minkyu. Leandro Basan dished out a simple header and found the back of the HK U23 net.
HK U23 desperately tired to pull one back and came close on the 81st minute. Wong Chi-hong pushed forward with the ball down the middle before ripping a shot towards the BC Rangers net, only to come up empty-handed.
The score stood towards the final whistle, as BC Rangers secured a 2:0 victory over HK U23 on the chilly evening.