Rangers lost for the second game in a row in the Hong Kong Premier League after losing 0-1 to Yuen Long. Aleksander Randelovic scored the winner for the Tangerines, who moved up to the fifth position in the Hong Kong Premier League. Zinc Yeung rounds-up the action.
Rangers fielded an unchanged lineup to last week’s win against Dreams. Lai Lok-yin continued in a central midfield role while Argentine Cristian Castano started for the second match in a row. Yuen Long made two changes to their lineup, as Yiu Ho-ming replaced Wong Yim-kwan as left-back, while Lau Ka-ming started ahead of Ip Chong-long in midfield in a 4-1-4-1 formation.
Both sides started brightly with a few goal scoring chances. In the fourth minute, Yiu Ho-ming’s overhead pass found Everton Camargo and had a golden chance to score after Rangers keeper Wong Tse-Yang failed to hold onto the ball, but the the Brazilian couldn’t control his shot. Rangers forward Cristian Castano also had an effort from outside the box two minutes later, which was held by Chan Ka-ho.
However, with the rain beginning to fall from around the 10th minute mark, it made it difficult for both sides to produce chances on goal, with plenty of long balls but most not finding their intended target. The pitch was also not in great condition which made it even more difficult for both sides to break the deadlock.
In the 16th minute, Marko Krasic put in a rough tackle on Lau Ho-lam, and although the referee called it as a foul he did not caution the Serbian midfielder. The Yuen Long coaching staff were furious about the decision and protested obstinately, and the referee had to warn several members of the staff to calm down or risk being sent to the stands.
Meanwhile Rangers keeper Wong Tse-yeung, who started ahead of Oleksii Shliakotin for the second match in a row, made an error when taking a goal kick in the 24th minute but Igor Miovic did manage to keep possession despite being under pressure from Everton Camargo. As a result, all goal kicks afterwards were taken by other members of the Rangers squad instead.
No real chance was produced until the 45th minute when Rangers cleared the ball to Aleksander Randelovic, who then hit a beautiful curling shot from outside the box which went above Wong Tse-yeung to give Yuen Long the lead before the end of the first half.
Rangers made a change at the start of the second half as Lau Cheuk-hin replaced Tang Lok-man, moving Lai Lok-yin back to the winger position. However, it was Yuen Long who had the more clear cut chances to extend their lead, and in the 50th minute after Michel Clayton lost possession inside the box, Randelovic took a shot from the edge of the box in the aftermath but was only able to hit the post.
Rangers tried to press for a goal but they largely looked a frustrated outfit, with Yeung Chi-lun, Miovic and Zhang Jun all picking up yellow cards. Meanwhile several Yuen Long players including Carlos Bertoldi and Tam Lok-hin were booked because of time-wasting.
Towards the end of the match, Rangers pushed for an equaliser, even pushing up Clayton to play as a striker, but it was Yuen Long who had another chance to extend the lead, when substitute Ip Chong-long’s cross found Randelovic but the Serbian winger’s shot only managed to hit the post for the second time in the match.
The scoreline remained unchanged, meaning that Yuen Long move up to fifth position after the 1:0 win. Rangers still remain without a point in the league, and are tied in bottom place with Eastern.