Terengganu hoping for good result on return to Sultan Mizan Stadium


PETALING JAYA: Terengganu are aiming to mark their return to the Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin Stadium in Gong Badak with a bang.

Turtles coach Abdul Rahman Ibrahim is hoping to turn around the tide in the east coast side’s favour in their FA Cup semi-final, return-leg clash against Lions XII today.

The Singaporeans won the first leg 2-1 at the Jalan Besar Stadium last week.

“We’re returning to this stadium after six years and we’re not going to hold anything back ... we have to win this game at all cost,” said Abdul Rahman.

The former national coach said that it’s not an impossible task “because it’s only one goal and we will be in front of our fans”.

“We will start with a slight disadvantage, but the good thing is we have a priceless away goal. All we need is a simple 1-0 win to check into the final,” he said.

Abdul Rahman, however, knows that it’s always risky to aim for a solitary goal.

“Our opponents are not going to sit back and let us take the game to them ... not when they have a slim lead. The Lions are known for their quick breakaways ... we have to be on our toes,” he said.

Terengganu do have firepower upfront to cause serious damage to Lions XI in national strikers Norshahrul Idlan Talaha, Abdul Manaf Mamat and last year’s Golden Boot winner Paulo Rangel.

But the problem is that the trio have hit a slump and Terengganu have scored only one goal in their last three matches in all competitions.

But the wily 69-year-old coach believes his men will come good today.

The Sultan Mizan Stadium can accommodate 50,000 fans. It was closed when the roof collapsed in 2009, forcing all matches to be played at the smaller 10,000-capacity Sultan Ismail Stadium in Kuala Terengganu.

“Returning to the Sultan Mizan Stadium will be good for us as more fans can watch us play. They will be our 12th man and lift the team,” said Abdul Rahman. 

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