Red Giants stay home to warm up ahead of M-League

PETALING JAYA: Selangor have been left without much choice but to train at home after all their plans for stints abroad fell through.

Selangor coach B. Sathianathan has lined up matches against Premier League sides Kelantan, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and Perak II as part of their pre-season training before the Super League starts on Feb 28.

The Red Giants were scheduled to play in the Meizhou Hakka Cup in China from Jan 24-28 but the rising number of infections and deaths from the coronavirus outbreak forced Selangor to pull the plug on the trip.

The door also closed on the Klang Valley giants to participate in tours in Thailand as their neighbours had wrapped up their pre-season ahead of their league starting on Feb 14.

They tried to explore the possibility of touring in Indonesia but most of the teams were committed to their own mini tournaments.

Sathianathan said he would try to get the best out of the situation.

“We would have preferred to compete in China but that did not happen.

“We did look at the chance to play friendlies in Thailand and Indonesia but it was difficult to get matches there, ” said Sathianathan.

“I’ve lined up matches against strong Premier League teams. Kelantan are strong at home, KL have signed good players, Penang are on a good run, while Perak II’s are a good team with talented young players.”

Meanwhile, Selangor’s injured Spanish striker Rufino Segovia and winger Wan Zack Haikal Wan Noor are back in training but Mohd Syazwan Zainon has been floored with an ankle injury picked up in their 5-1 win over UKM last Wednesday.

Sathianathan confirmed that they managed to hold on to Singaporean midfielder Safuwan Baharuddin amidst the interest of a Thai League side.

“It’s normal for players with good quality to get offers, the opportunity came but the deal for Safuwan didn’t go through as the management decided to keep him, ” he said.

“I’m glad that he’ll remain with us... losing key players like him before the season starts in 10 days could be disastrous.”

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