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Fandi eyeing first away win and clean sheet

Fandi eyeing first away win and clean sheet

SINGAPORE, 27 FEBRUARY 2015: LionsXII coach Fandi Ahmad is aiming to lead his team to its first away win and clean sheet of the season when they take on PB Melayu in Kedah on Saturday for an FA Cup first-round fixture.

The LionsXII have played two consecutive away matches to Kelantan and Perak, but was unable to gain a win both times.

In addition, they have also not managed to record a clean sheet since the start of the season.

With their next game against third division side PB Melayu Kedah, it seems Fandi’s charges have a good chance of claiming their first away win and clean sheet.

While the former Singapore international is confident in his side’s ability to do so, he stressed that they have to be on their toes during the match.

“We can’t take things for granted, we will approach every game the same way and do our best,” he said.

“If we stick to the plan, I believe we will win if all goes well, if we’re not overconfident, and we play like how we played over the last three games.”

LionsXII captain Isa Halim echoed his coach’s assessment, and has rallied the team to stop conceding goals which he believes are preventable.

“I think it is correct to say we can’t underestimate anybody at all; the FA Cup is always a giant-killing competition and the lower teams want to have their chance to prove themselves,” said Isa.

“We have to stick to our game plan, there isn’t a single second when we can relax at all.

“The target for us is to play well and get the clean sheet. It is a pity that even though we played well in some of the games, we still conceded goals. Defending is a team effort and we can’t fault anybody in particular at all.”

Squad-wise, Sufian Anuar is still a doubt for Saturday’s clash, while left-back Hafiz Sujad is definitely out with a knee injury.

Wahyudi Wahid is poised to be Hafiz’s replacement, with Afiq Yunos and Madhu Mohana set to remain in the centre of defence.

LionsXII have never progressed beyond the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, but Fandi is not looking beyond the first-round for now.

“We should take it game by game, because every opponent is different. I think it’s best to take it one game at a time,” he said.