EMKAY-NPNG are hungry for success in the Football Association of Selangor (FAS) league.
Emkay-NPNG, who won the FA Cup and Super Division titles in 2012 and 2013, have been struggling to live up to expectations in the competitive FAS League.
In 2014, Emkay-NPNG had to be content with winning the Charity Shield but lost in the semi-finals in both the FA Cup and league.
Last season, they were eliminated in the semifinals in the Super Division and lost in the quarter-finals to PKNS on penalty kicks.
This season, the team manage-ment have again set a target of winning silverware. And coach Michael Palani said they were looking at winning the double – FA Cup and Super Division title – this year.
“In both the seasons, we only managed to qualify for the semi-finals. We are looking at better fortunes this year. It is not going to be easy but we are confident. We have also strengthened the team with about 80% new talent.
“They are new to the FAS league but have the experience to match our rivals in the FA Cup as well as the Super Division.
“It is time for us to win a trophy. For us two years is a long time,’’ said Palani.
Emkay-NPNG showed they were on course to achieve their target when they qualified for the quarter finals of the FA Cup competition.
Emkay-NPNG booked their spot in the last eight when they defeated Belia Selangor B in a third round match.
Mohammad Syazwan Mohamed Rani headed Emkay-NPNG’s opening goal in the sixth minute from a corner.
Mohamad Lukhman Noor Hakim Jaafar made it 2-0 in the 14th minute while Mohd Shamer Alif Jamaluddin scored the third goal in the 43rd minute.
Belia Selangor B also had several chances but they were unable to beat Emkay-NPNG goalkeeper Mohd Zaidi Razlee, who was in top form.
Although Belia Selangor B lost, they should be commended as the players were all teenagers. They are being groomed to represent Selangor in next year’s Under-19 Youth Cup, organised by the Football Association of Malaysia.
Belia Selangor B coach K. Ramachandran said the players gave their best against Emkay-NPNG.
“We must not forget that Emkay-NPNG are a seasoned side with an excellent record in the league. They are one of the favourites in the FAS league.
“Our players would have gained valuable exposure. Now we will concentrate on the Super Division. We hope to finish among the top four in the group and qualify for the quarter-finals,’’ said Ramachandran.
Palani said it was a morale boosting win for Emkay-NPNG who would be meeting Smart Focus in the quarter-finals.
“Smart Focus are also playing in the Super Division. It should be an interesting and exciting match. We will be well prepared to take them on,’’ said Palani.
In another third round match, former champions PKNS defeated My World 3-0 at the PKNS Sports Complex in Kelana Jaya.
Besides Emkay-NPNG and PKNS, MAFC, Team Force, TLDM, PNSB, PJH-Iman and Smart Focus have qualified for the quarter-finals.
Emkay-NPNG will meet Smart Focus; PKNS takes on MAFC; Team Force clashes with PNSB while TLDM will lock horns with PJH-Iman.
Except for PJH-Iman, playing in Division One, the other seven teams are from the Super Division.
FAS competition committee deputy chairman Datuk S. Sivasundram said the quarter-final matches should be exciting.
“It is also encouraging to see PJH-Iman creating an impact in the competition. We wish the quarterfinalists all the best,’’ said Sivasundram.
The FA Cup champions will receive RM10,000 while the runners-up will get RM5,000.
FA Cup – Third round
Emkay-NPNG bt Belia Selangor B 3-0, PKNS bt My World 3-0.