HARIMAU MUDA C will be going for a three-month training-cum-competition stint to Slovakia.
Before they leave for Slovakia in mid May, Harimau Muda C will have to complete their fixtures in the ongoing FAM Cup competition.
Harimau Muda C, playing in the nine-team Group B, will not have the privilege of any break until their last match on May 10.
The team, comprising a group of Under-18 players, are preparing for the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Under-19 competition in Indonesia from Aug 22 to Sept 4.
In Slovakia, Harimau Muda C will be playing in Division Two involving nine teams and are scheduled to play a total of 16 matches in the league.
Harimau Muda C coach Hassan Sazali Mohd Waras said they were prepared for the challenging outing in the FAM Cup.
“We have to complete our home and away matches before we leave for Slovakia. We will be playing some matches in midweek. We don’t have any problems as the tight schedule will be good for the players.
“The FAM Cup gives us an excellent platform to evaluate the players. They will get to play against some seasoned teams. We are not looking at the results in the FAM Cup.
“We want the players to gain experience as well as improve their match fitness for the Slovak League. We are reshuffling the starting 11 as we want to give all the players, in the team, equal opportunities,’’ said Hassan.
Harimau Muda C’s third match was against Malaysian Indian Sports Council – Malaysian Indian Football Association (MISC-MIFA) at the Maybank Sports Complex in Bangi.
It was an interesting match as MISC-MIFA were riding high after giving a fright to Super Division side Pahang before losing 2-1 in the FA Cup competition.
MISC-MIFA showed their determination by edging Harimau Muda C 3-2. MISC-MIFA started the match on an impressive note and scored in the sixth minute through Muhammad Fauzi Abdul Kadar.
Inspired by the goal, MISC-MIFA continued to be on the offensive and were rewarded in the 23rd minute. This time it was Ooi Shee Keong who scored past Harimau Muda C’s Damien Lim.
However Harimau Muda C were not prepared to give up. They earned a penalty during injury time in the first half. And Muhammad Shah Amirul Mohd Zamri made no mistake from the spot.
The second half resumed with Harimau Muda C looking for the equaliser. It came in the 72nd minute when substitute Muhammad Danial Ashraf Abdullah scored.
The 2-2 scoreline remained until the 82nd minute when MISC-MIFA scored what turned out to be the winning goal via a counter-attack through substitute L. Thanaraj.
Hassan said it was a good match and his players gave their best.
“We must not forget that all our players are students and they were up against an experienced team with several seasoned players,’’ added Hassan.
MISC-MIFA manager J. Dhina-garan said it was a close match and could have gone either way.
“But luck was on our side and we are returning with maximum points. That’s very important for us. We will be back to get more points in our next matches,’’ said Dhinagaran.
Meanwhile, an exciting match is in store when Felcra FC and Megah Murni meet in a top-of-the-table Group A match at the UM Sports Complex in Kuala Lumpur and Perlis take on Sungai Ara FC at the Tuanku Syed Putra Stadium in Kangar on Sunday.
In Group B, Kedah United, who are leading the table with six points, will be looking forward to extending their winning streak when they take on Kuala Lumpur Young Fighters at the Lada Stadium in Langkawi.
Fixture (kick off 4.45pm)
Group A: PBAPP vs Shahzan Muda (City Stadium, Penang); Perlis vs Sungai Ara FC (Tuanku Syed Putra Stadium, Kangar); Hanelang FC vs Negri Sembilan Prisons (Astaka ground, Kuala Berang); UKM FC vs KL Real Mulia FC (UKM Sports Complex, Bangi); Felcra FC vs Megah Murni FC (UM Sports Centre, Kuala Lumpur)
Group B: MISC-MIFA vs Malacca (DRB Hicom-Honda Stadium, Sungai Petani); Kedah United vs KL Young Fighters (Lada Stadium, Langkawi); Airasia FC vs Ipoh Football Association (UPM Sports Complex, Serdang); Harimau Muda C vs Johor Darul Ta’zim III (Maybank Sports Complex, Bangi)