Sabah will stoke the fire, without fans

  • Football
  • Saturday, 14 Mar 2020

PETALING JAYA: Sabah will miss their 12th member at the Likas Stadium when they take on Perak in their Super League clash at the Likas Stadium tonight.

The Rhinos will have to play behind closed doors following the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) and Malaysian Football League’s (MFL) advice due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The M-League will be suspended indefinitely after this weekend.

The Premier League champions started their Super League campaign with a goalless draw with Police in Kuala Lumpur on March 1 before beating Felda United 3-1 at home in Likas on March 7 but slumped to a 0-2 loss to Pahang in Kuantan last Tuesday.

The Rhinos skipper Rawilson Batuil knows the advantage of playing at home but said the team would miss their vociferous support from the crowd.

The centreback admitted that the Super League newcomers are still a bit jittery after three matches in the top flight but are confident they will find their feet soon.

“Playing at home is an advantage but unfortunately, we won’t have our fans for this game. Still, we will go all out to get a win for them, ” said the 25-year-old.

“I think the players are still nervous as we are newcomers to the Super League. Our last two opponents Felda United and Pahang are used to playing in the top flight and they have quality players in their ranks. This might be the reason why we got anxious... for the Perak game we need to be better prepared.

“Perak have a formidable attack with players like Shahrel Fikri Md Fauzi, Careca, Guilherme De Paula and J. Parthiban. We need to be vigilant against these players and we will be ready to face them... We want to pile the pressure on Perak and the coach told us to go all out to win the game.”

Sabah coach Kurniawan Dwi Yulianto has brought in new striker Frenchman Guy Gnabouyou last week in place of Puerto Rican forward Hector Ramos, who was axed after failing to impress.

Rawilson hopes the 30-year-old Gnabouyou, a former Olympique Marseille youth player, can gel with the team quickly.

“We are still looking to build an understanding with Guy who has just joined the team. I hope he can adapt quickly to the rest of the team.”

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Rawilson Batuil , Sabah , Super League , Football , Perak


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