Am­bi­tious first-timers

New Straits Times - - Sport -

FIRST-TIMERS Perak SEDC and Univer­sity Tech­nol­ogy Malaysia (UiTM) have each set a high tar­get in the Malaysia Cup.

Both Pre­mier League teams be­lieve they have the depth to upset the form book in their re­spec­tive groups to make the quar­ter-fi­nals.

Perak SEDC, com­pris­ing former Malaysia Games and Pres­i­dent’s Cup play­ers, have de­fied the odds this sea­son by reach­ing the quar­ter-fi­nals of the FA Cup.

The club are also on course to earn pro­mo­tion to the Su­per League as they are cur­rently sec­ond in their first ever sea­son in the Pre­mier League.

Perak SEDC’s re­sound­ing sea­son so far has sur­prised many as they have been re­ly­ing on only three for­eign­ers and young lo­cal play­ers.

De­spite hav­ing in­ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers, coach Abu Bakar Fadzim be­lieves they can chal­lenge former cham­pi­ons Pa­hang and Ne­gri Sem­bi­lan and T-Team to fin­ish top two in Group A.

“We have been con­sis­tent and this has sur­prised many. Self-be­lief is im­por­tant in foot­ball and I hope the boys will main­tain their form in the Malaysia Cup,” Abu Bakar said yes­ter­day.

“We are also look­ing for a fourth for­eigner to boost our squad. Perak have loaned us de­fender Raffi Na­goor­gani and winger Hafiz Ram­dan. I be­lieve the new in­clu­sions will give me more op­tion.

“Pa­hang are the favourites in the group but I think we can match the oth­ers to cre­ate his­tory by qual­i­fy­ing for the quar­ter-fi­nals.”

UiTM are re­lieved that Nige­rian striker Akanni Wa­siu and South Korean winger Do Dong Hyun, who have scored 23 goals be­tween them, have pledged to re­main with the club un­til the end of the sea­son.

Wa­siu and Dong Hyun re­ceived sev­eral of­fers from Su­per League clubs but both want to stay on and help UiTM cre­ate his­tory.

UiTM are in Group C with Kedah, Ke­lan­tan and Me­laka.

Coach Wan Mustaffa Wan Is­mail hopes Wa­siu and Dong Hyun will keep to their word as they may change their mind be­fore the mid-sea­son trans­fer win­dow ends on June 11.

“I hope they will not make a Uturn in the last minute as we are not look­ing for new for­eign sign­ings,” said Wan Mustaffa. Ajitpal Singh

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.