Tai Po FC - History - 2007-08 Season

2007-08 Season

After the inaugural season, the club's coach Chan Hiu Ming (Chinese:陳曉明)left the club for the newly promoted Workable (Chinese:華家堡). Tai Po FC spent most of the off-season searching for a new coach. Finally, former Hong Kong football star Tim Bredbury, who coached Rangers for a short period of time in the previous season, accepted the job. Moreover, in response to the successful and popular home game last season, Tai Po FC has applied for 5 home games to be played in Tai Po in the following season.

HKFA has announced the decision: the first 9 matches of Tai Po FC, no matter scheduled as home or away game, will be played in Tai Po Sports Ground. But the arrangement was strongly criticized and objected by the first game opponent, Workable's manager also Tai Po FC's ex-coach Chan Hiu Ming. Chan Hiu Ming expressed his team would not play their home game at Tai Po Sports Ground firmly and questioned the fairness about the arrangement. Eventually, HKFA re-arranged the schedule, where Tai Po FC would only play their home game at Tai Po Sports Ground for the entire season.

Unfortunately, Tai Po Sports Ground's refurbishment didn't help much on the pitch quality. Up to this point, no Tai Po FC's game has been held at Tai Po Sports Ground.

Apart from promoting players from the youth team, the team kept most of its important homegrown players, except Kan Tsz Yeung(Chinese:簡子洋) and Chung Kin Keung (Chinese:鍾健強), both left to join Workable. The three foreign players also stayed with the team in the new season, including the fans' favourite Christian Kwesi Annan. New players was introduced after the season has started. Chinese player Ye Jia(Chinese:葉佳) was signed from Rangers FC after the first match, and followed by the Brazilian forward Rafael dos Santos, Betine "Betine", who has also scored a debut goal in the match against Rangers FC.

The first 5 matches in the season resulted in 7 league points, which met the expectation. The contract of Tim Bredbury was terminated with agreement from both parties, however. Some notable reasons are the board disagreeing on some decisions of Bredbury on starting line up and substitution. Tim Bredbury has also had very poor relationship with the players caused by the training methods. Formation, tactics and player deployment was also highly questionable(some notable decisions were deploying players well known with skill to play in center position to the wing, and wingers were deployed in the central midfield). Chan Ho Yin(Chinese:陳浩然) was appointed as the main coach after Tim Bredbury's departure.

Another notable events of the club in the season was the penalty dispute in the league game against Eastern AA at 2 December 2007. In the 25th minutes, Tai Po was awarded a penalty and scored by Dega. However, Dega was judged, by the game referee Pau Sai Yin, performed interrupting movement during approaching the ball. According to the rule of FIFA, for infractions by the kicking team, should a goal be scored the kick is retaken. However, the referee awarded a free kick to Eastern AA which has violated the rule of FIFA. After the game, Tai Po Football Club made an official objection to the HKFA and the objection has been approved by the example of the rematch decision made by FIFA on 2006 Asian World Cup Qualigying game Bahrain vs Uzbekistan. In the rematch, Tai Po Football Club won by 3-1, Dega scored a penalty kick without any disputes.

The team had some bad matches in the middle of the season but ended the season strongly, especially with two fabulous 2-1 winning against the eventually league champion South China. In the first match, Tai Po Football Club delayed the league championships declaration of South China and knocked it out of Hong Kong FA Cup in semi-final in the second match.

Tai Po Football Club ended the league in the 3rd position with is over expectation. The team also played in first top division competition final against Citizen at 18 May 2008 in Hong Kong Stadium and lost the match in 0-2.

Read more about this topic:  Tai Po FC, History

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