Double joy for Perlis
IT has been a good week for Perlis after picking up six points in their desperate battle to avoid being relegated from the Premier League.
Three of those points came on the pitch on Wednesday when they defeated relegation rivals the Malaysian Indians (MISC-MIFA) 3-2 in Petaling Jaya before an unexpected bonus from the boardroom on Thursday.
Football Malaysia LLP (FMLLP) agreed to halve the six-point deduction imposed on Perlis as punishment for late payment of statutory obligations, immediately lifting the team from the bottom of the standings to 11th and level on six points with the Malaysian Indians.
Super League side Kuala Terengganu T-Team also had their six-point deduction cut to three which lifted the club one spot to seventh in the standings.
The recent developments have given coach Syamsul Saad renewed hope that Perlis can avoid a return to the FAM League, where they languished as recently as 2015.
“There is no denying we are in a desperate situation and we only have nine more games to save ourselves from relegation,” Syamsul told Timesport yesterday.
“I am grateful to FMLLP for reducing our punishment and thanks also to the management for making the appeal.
“After winning on Wednesday, it has certainly been a good week for us.”
Perlis secured victory with onloan Queens Park Rangers striker Brandon Adams their only foreign player in their line up as immigration problems saw Jamaican defender Damion Stewart and South Korean midfielder Oh Kyu-bin forced to leave the team.
However, Syamsul has strengthened the team with the signing of three local players in Riduwan Ma’on, Alif Jamaluddin and Fikri Sudin.
“There are six or seven foreign players who will be arriving for trials next week and we hope to be able to fill the vacancies we have in the team,” said Syamsul, who also lost South Korean Park Yong-Joon to a long-term injury.
“A lot of people don’t know the problems we faced with our foreign players, leaving us with just Adams.
“But I told the players that we needed to play with full commitment and passion and I’m glad we got the win on Wednesday.”
Adams struck twice in the opening 12 minutes before Perlis survived a red card for goalkeeper Nasril Nourdin with 20 minutes remaining to hang on for the win over the Malaysian Indians which has boosted their survival hopes.