By K. RAJAN
SHAH ALAM: Selangor finally showed their true colours to hammer fancied Johor Darul Takzim (JDT) 4-1 in a Super League match at the Shah Alam Stadium last night.
The Red Giants, who have not won anything for the last two seasons, gave an inspired performance to stop JDT’s eight-match unbeaten run.
It was Selangor’s biggest win to date. As for the visitors, it was their worst-ever defeat since losing 3-2 to Pahang in the season’s opening game in Kuantan on Jan 8.
Last night, Selangor shone with goals by national flanker S. Kunalan (4th minute), Francis Doe (32nd), Mahalli Jasuli (66th) and skipper Mohd Amri Yahyah (69th) while Norshahrul Idlan Talaha (75th) scored a consolation goal for JDT.
The Selangor midfield was clearly back at its best with the return of K. Solihin, K. Gurusamy, S. Veenod and S. Kunalan.
Selangor coach Irfan Bakti had warned that the quartet were his best midfielders. And he was proven right as the four, finally playing together after more than a month, bossed the midfield.
Selangor, however, found themselves down to 10 men in the 56th minute after Peter Chrappan was sent off for a second bookable offence, with the team leading 2-0.
But even that could not slow Selangor down as they scored two more goals before conceding a consolation goal.
The nippy Kunalan caused the early damage when his seemingly harmless cross from the left sailed into the net – much to the surprise of JDT goalkeeper Zamir Selamat – in the fourth minute.
JDT were in more trouble when Solihin’s defence splitting pass found the lurking Francis Doe, who sneaked in the second goal in the 32nd minute.
Selangor’s third came when over-lapping rightback Mahalli bulldozed his way to let fly from the top of the box in the 66th minute before Mohd Amri capped a glorious night for the Red Giants with an opportunist goal three minutes later.
Meanwhile, treble winners Kelantan suffered their third defeat in the competition after going down 1-0 to Lions XII at the Jalan Besar Stadium. Shafiq Ghani was the hero for the Lions when he netted in the 87th minute.
- So much hype but less than 5,000 fans turn up for the clash of two giants
- Red Giants stumble again, Perak inflict more pain on Irfan’s players
- Red Giants almost there with easy win, Pahang have it tough
- Imperious Red Giants Doe and Ramez lead the way in Selangor’s victory over Kelantan
- Aiming to be Giants again