Written By: Shawn Lim
LionsXII coach Fandi Ahmad commended his players for their determination and character after watching them come from behind to beat Perak FA on Wednesday night at Jalan Besar Stadium.
The Bos Gaurus had taken an early lead in the 12th minute through Namkung Woong, but goals from Hafiz Sujad and Safuwan Bahrudin ensured that the LionsXII secured a vital win as they moved up one spot in the Malaysia Super League to sixth position.
“It was a difficult and tight game today because Perak are one of the fittest teams in the league and they have a lot of young players,” said Fandi
“They play similar football to us, but their approach is more direct. They also didn’t give us much space in the first half and shut down our movements, especially our two wingers.
“I thought our second-half’s performance was a little bit better because we showed a lot of character, discipline, responsibility and maturity to come back and win the game.”
Fandi was also particularly pleased with Hafiz’s performance, as the defender not only scored his third goal of the season but also cleared Perak’s striker Charles Souza Chad goal-bound effort off the line in the dying minutes of the game.
“Hafiz is a silent worker and he works very hard. I was asking him just before the game how many goals he has scored and suddenly, he scored and even made a goal-line clearance,” Fandi shared.
“He’s a honest player, which is very important. He attacks, defends and cover open spaces without any complaints.
“He also shows a lot of determination in the air even though he’s not a very tall defender.”