JDT coach Bojan Hodak feels the Lions XII will be under pressure to win in their home ground at Jalan Besar Stadium. - Filepic
PETALING JAYA: Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) coach Bojan Hodak is wary of the lion’s pounce.
JDT face Lions XII at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Tuesday night and Hodak believes that the Singapore side will be under pressure to win at home.
The Lions are currently in eighth place with 21 points after 15 matches in the 12-team Super League standings and closer to relegation.
The defending champions have lost six matches this season, including two at home. It is in stark contrast to last season, where they only lost three matches and were unbeaten at home.
The Lions are desperate to turn their fortune around after losing three of their last four league matches.
“Lions are in a position that they never thought they would be in ... they are now under pressure to win this match,” said the Croatian on Monday.
“They are basically the Singapore national team. They might not have any outstanding individual but they play well as a team and run a lot during matches.”
Hodak rubbished talk that his side are also under pressure to deliver a win after their three-match winning streak was halted by Pahang with a 2-2 draw last week.
The former Kelantan coach is not bothered with records as his focus is on winning matches.
“I’m not upset or obsessed with records. We played well against Pahang but came undone with a costly error,” said Hodak, referring to goalkeeper Mohd Izham Tarmizi’s howler which led to Pahang’s equaliser.
“These things happens in football ... one mistake doesn’t turn Izham into a bad player.
“We are playing good football and the key is just to continue playing according to the game plan.”
A win for the cash-rich JDT will see them move into the top-three bracket and within reach of leaders Selangor, who have 34 points. JDT are currently fourth with 26 points.
The 43-year-old added that striker Norshahrul Idlan Talaha, who just recovered from conjunctivitis, and defender Marcos Santos, who is recovering from a head wound, are doubtful for the trip across the Causeway.