PETALING JAYA: Cash-strapped MISC-MIFA believe they can turn giant-killers and make their presence felt in the Malaysia Cup after defeating the favourites Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT).
MISC-MIFA defied all the odds to shock the recently crowned Super League champions 2-1 on their own turf at the Larkin Stadium in Johor on Sunday night.
The away side got to a shocking lead in the 18th minute through their Liberian forward Kpah Sherman before Fernando Marquez of Argentina drew level with a 68th minute penalty.
But South Korean midfielder Bae Beom-geun ensured a fairy tale ending with his late strike in the 80th minute.
MISC-MIFA head coach K. Devan said despite their financial troubles, the players put on a spirited display to earn the full three points in the Group C match.
“The management has been working very hard on the financial aspect, keeping the promises and paying the salaries on time,” said Devan.
“We’re looking forward to some sponsors to help the team, and also hoping for some support from the fans. I’m glad the team put all this aside and gave their best.”
“We’ve been getting good comments which has given us the belief that we are a team who can fight the elite teams like Kelantan and Kedah in this group.”
Devan said the victory against the defending champions was due to the disciplined defence of his players and the safe hands of his goalkeeper.
“JDT played very well and they were attacking all the time, but we also did very well defensively. We managed to create some good chances through the counter attacks and scored the goals,” he said.
“We knew that they were good on the offensive, so we tried to close down on their key players and defended well during set pieces.”
The road ahead for the Premier League side is still an uphill battle as they are the only team in their group who have not won the Malaysia Cup.
“We’ve no special target in the Malaysia Cup, but if we can win one or two more matches, then we’ve a chance to go to the quarter-finals.”
“But in order to do so, we have to reproduce this same level of performance in the other matches.”
“The other teams have won the Cup before and have more experience than us, but if we focus on our game, stick to our game plan, tactics, and prepare well, we’ll go all out to put on a good show for the fans.”
MISC-MIFA’s next match is against Kelantan on Friday at the MBPJ Stadium.