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Friday August 30, 2013 MYT 8:04:00 PM
Friday August 30, 2013 MYT 8:05:51 PM
by k. rajan
Forces’ playmaker Bruno Martelotto (centre) is highly unlikely to play against Johor. The Argentinian has picked up a toe injury.
PETALING JAYA: Armed Forces coach B. Sathianathan has demanded discipline from his players when they take on Johor in their Malaysia Cup Group A match at the Selayang Stadium on Saturday.
The Gladiators got off to a slow start with a 3-2 loss to Sime Darby before a 3-2 win over Selangor and a 3-3 draw with Johor in the first round of the group stage. Sathia’s men are third in the standings with four points, a point behind Johor, while Sime Darby leads the Group with six points.
Armed Forces have scored and conceded the most number of goals in the competition thus far and Sathia admits that his team’s defensive play has been uncharacteristically poor this Malaysia Cup.
“We have scored nine goals which is good but at the same time we have conceded nine goals .... This is very uncharacteristic for my team,” said Sathianathan on Friday.
“This has left me scratching my head .... We suddenly have lost our discipline and the positioning of players is not good enough during matches. The players are too eager to score and are leaving too much space for counter-attacks from our opponents.
“For the past few days, we have been training and improving our defence and I’m confident the team will do better in our three remaining group matches.”
The former national coach said that they have learnt their lesson well after the slow start and reckons that his side still have a good chance of progressing to the quarter-finals.
However, Forces’ Argentinian playmaker Bruno Martelotto is highly unlikely to feature against high-flying Premier League side Johor after picking up a toe injury.
Commenting on the return match against the Southern Tigers, who staged a comeback to hold Forces to a 3-3 draw on Tuesday, Sathia said that “his players have to turn up in the first minute and not after 45 minutes.”
“We have all learnt that there’s no easy meet in the Malaysia Cup. Johor have a good playmaker in Ezequiel Gallegos and striker Mohd Farid Ideris will be their dangerman,” said Sathia.
“Johor will be a tough opponent but we can get a result against them. We have three more matches to turn our fortunes around and I’m confident that the team will advance to the final eight.”
Tags / Keywords:
football, Malaysia Cup, Armed Forces, B. Sathianathan, Gladiators, Johor, Bruno Martelotto, Southern Tigers
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