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Titleholders Tampines unveil squad
Saturday, February 1, 2014

Tampines Rovers FC players celebrate after winning the Singapore League last season. The club unveiled their players for the 2014 season on Thursday. Picture: Courtesy of S-League

Defending Singapore League champions Tampines Rovers FC have taken on former Serbian Under-23 striker Miljan Mrdakovic as their marquee signing for the season.

The S-League website reported the 31-year-old has a wealth of experience, including Asian Champions League (ACL) pedigree - where has scored twice in six appearances for Chinese Super League (CSL) outfit Shandong Luneng five years ago.

Mrdakovic arrives at the five-time S-League champions from Greece Super League (top flight) club Veria with no doubts as to what is expected of him.

"Wherever I go, I score lots of goals and fans expect me to score more than 20 goals!" Mrdakovic was quoted as saying on the S-League website.

The Serbian joins Paraguayan duo Roberto Martinez Gamarra (striker) Luis Alberto Closa Gonzales (midfielder) and Japanese Norihiro Kawakami (defender).

Kawakami will meet a familiar face in countryman Kunihiro Yamashita - who was the only import Tampines retained from last season.

The two centre-backs formed a formidable partnership when they laced up together for Japanese outfit Albirex Niigata (S) FC during 2011 and 2012.

The two Paraguayans are set to have just a big impact on the other end of the pitch.

"I have a squad full of quality players who can play entertaining football. My two new Paraguayans are ones to look out for," said Tampines coach Salim Moin on the S-League website.

"They are creative and love taking shots at goal from a distance, just like me in the olden days," the former Singapore international pointed out during the unveiling of Tampines' 2014 squad on Thursday evening.

"I would want to try and win all the local competitions, and my target for ACL would be making the group stages," added the former Woodlands Wellington tactician, whose team start their season tomorrow when they take on Hong Kong club South China AA in the ACL qualifying play-off.

Gamarra has already proven himself to be a goal threat after netting Tampines' only goal during their 7-1 loss to Malaysian Super League side Johor Darul Ta'zim I in a recent friendly at the at Pasir Gudang Stadium in Johor.

Gamarra and Mrdakovic will join Noh Alam Shah and veteran Aleksandar Duric up front for the Stags.

Tampines kick off their S-League season against Home United on Feb 21 in a match that will double up as the Charity Shield.

DPMM FC are set to take on Tampines on March 23 in what will be a crucial match for both teams at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.

DPMM FC finished second to Tampines in the 2012 title race, losing out on the title by one points.

Results weren't as positive last season though, with Brunei's only professional club finishing eighth in the S-League.

DPMM FC are set to take on Albirex in their season-opener on Feb 22 and then face Warriors FC in their first home game six days later.

They will then travel to the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore to play Home United on March 13 before hosting Tampines.

DPMM FC are still on the hunt for a marquee signing. They have penned deals with defender Boric Raspudic from Bosnia, midfielders Roberto Alviz from Croatia and Joe Gamble from Ireland as this season's imports.

Brazilian forward Rodrigo Tosi was the only import DPMM FC retained for this season.

Courtesy from Brunei Times