THE Penang Panthers’
poor showing against Kuala Lumpur SPA Putrajaya at
the Hang Jebat Stadium in Kuala Lumpur has cost them their Premier League leadership.
On a day when they needed all three points just to stay at the top of the pile ahead of Police, they fired blanks instead in a goalless draw.
It was a bitter pill to swallow since rivals Police gunned down Kedah 3-1 in a match later at the Darulaman Stadium in Alor Setar.
This put Police at the top of the league table.
Panthers manager Mohamed Azizuddin Mohamed Shariff said they did not deserve to return home with just a mere point.
“We were a little complacent and over-confident at times, but my Panthers did put up a good performance.
“We failed to translate our chances into goals. Such was our predicament,” said Mohamed Azizuddin.
It did look as if luck had deserted the Penang Panthers that day, especially in the 80th minute.
Brazilian striker Hilton Mauro Moreira missed a golden chance when his header went past the KL SPA goalkeeper only to be turned away by a defender.
Another chance appeared when striker Mohamed Norizam Sulaiman, who had come on as
a substitute for an off-form Mohamed Baser Napea just minutes earlier, found himself face to face with the KL Spa goalkeeper in the very last minute of the match.
However, his attempt rolled wide to deny Penang.
The Panthers have now slipped back to second position in the table, handing the lead to Police due to an inferior goal difference.
Back home at the City Stadium, Penang’s club outfit PBAPP FC continued their miserable form with their seventh defeat in 10 outings.
They lost 0-3 against Kuala Lumpur’s DRB Hicom.
Though creative in some of their raids, the PBAPP FC boys failed to deliver the goods.
That allowed DRB Hicom, blessed with foreign imports, to fully exploit the situation.
Their Nigerian striker Ogunboye Iyanu Ezekiel drew first blood after 14 minutes.
Ogunboye, easily the most
tormenting figure to the PBAPP
FC defence, confidently latched onto a weak clearance and dribbled past charging goalkeeper Megat Amir Faisal for an easy goal.
That forced the Penang Waterboys to double their efforts in attack but they simply lacked the finishing touch.
DRB charged back to punish the Waterboys with a Mohamad Fakhrullah header which rolled into goal to put the KL side two-up in the 36th minute.
An unexpected volley from DRB’s Muhammad Azreen caught Megat Amir off his line in the 55th minute for a third goal.
This was enough to put the match beyond PBAPP FC.
RESULTS: PBAPP FC 0 DRB Hicom FC 3; Felda United FC 5 Perlis 1; Negri Sembilan 1 Selangor UITM FC 0; Kedah 1 Police 3; KL SPA Putrajaya FC 0 Penang 0; Sabah 1 Johor DT II 1.
FIXTURES FOR FRIDAY:
Penang vs Johor DT II (City Stadium, 8.45pm); Police vs KL SPA Putrajaya (Municipal Stadium, Kelana Jaya, 4.45pm); Selangor UITM FC vs Kedah (Stadium UiTM Shah Alam, 4.45pm); Perlis vs Negri Sembilan (Darulaman Stadium, 8.45pm); KL DRB Hicom FC vs KL Felda United FC (Hang Jebat Stadium, 4.45pm); Sabah vs PBAPP FC (Likas Stadium, 4.45pm).