PETALING JAYA: Akram Mahinan’s move to Kuala Lumpur raised a few eyebrows as they questioned his decision to play in the second-tier Premier League.
Afterall, the defensive midfielder has turned out for Super League teams Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT), Kedah and PKNS since 2016.
Despite several offers from Super League clubs, he still went on to sign up with the City Boys this year.
The 26-year-old Kedahan said he made the right move as KL are now back in the Super League.
“Some say my game will not progress by moving down. But if you ask me, the quality has improved tremendously, ” said Akram.
“The players work harder and give 100% in every match. They don’t make it easy for any teams. For them, this is their platform to shine so that they could earn a move to the Super League.”
Akram is also a hard man to please despite helping KL achieve their target of playing with the big boys.
“From my experience in the Super League, there’s plenty of work ahead for us. For me personally, I have to really raise my game in every match as competition will be intense.
“Hopefully, I can stay with the team next season, I really like it here, ” added Akram, who was part of the national team that finished second in the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup.
KL are also one of the 16 teams who will be vying for the coveted Malaysia Cup trophy next month.
Akram said despite not having big names, KL have an even chance as this year’s competition will be played in a knockout format.
“The format is similar to last season’s UEFA Champions League where teams only play one match, instead of two legs.
“So you have to perform for that 90 minutes and hope for some luck too, ” he said.
“Take the Lyon and Manchester City match for example. City were the favourites but Lyon sent them out with a comfy 3-1 win.
“When it’s just a one-off game, anything can happen. You only get one chance and you give your all.”
The competition will kick off with the first round on Nov 6-8. The quarter-finals will be held from Nov 12-13, semi-finals (Nov 17) and final (Nov 22).
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