Defeat not a problem for Dollah
acknowledging champions Darul Ta’zim were the better team on the day, Pahang coach Dollah Salleh believes his side are more than capable of giving their rivals a run for the Super League title.
Friday’s 3-2 win at Larkin, courtesy of a double strike by Ahmad Hazwan Bakri, allowed Darul Ta’zim to cut the gap to Pahang to two points and with a game in hand.
Dollah, however, knows there is still a long way to go in the title race with Malaysia Cup champions Kedah also in the mix.
“I cannot deny Darul Ta’zim are one of the strongest teams in the country but I think Pahang can match them and give them a run for their money right to the end,” insisted Dollah after Pahang fell to their second defeat in the league.
Dollah said he was upset with the referee’s performance although he did not elaborate on which incident specifically with Darul Ta’zim being awarded a penalty after Afif Amiruddin handled in the area.
After Matheus Alves scored in the 15th minute, Hazwan bagged a double before half-time, including scoring off a rebound after Safiq Rahim’s penalty was stopped by Wan Azraie Wan Teh.
“I think we only started playing in the second half,” said Dollah. “In the first half, we were on the backfoot and we were waiting a lot with Darul Ta’zim attacking.
“In the second half we pushed more and had one or two chances which we didn’t take. I’m also not pleased with the referee’s performance which was really disappointing.”
The victory extended Darul Ta’zim unbeaten Super League run at Larkin to 56 matches while they have not lost in any competition at home for 29 matches.
Coach Benjamin Mora, who fielded an unchanged line up for a third consecutive game, felt Darul Ta’zim were the better team on the pitch.
“Fortunately, we are a team that not only know how to attack but also to defend,” said the Mexican.