PETALING JAYA: Kedah coach Aidil Sharin is a gentleman who does not believe in Lady Luck.
The Singaporean trusts good, old-fashioned hard work and insists that is what won his team the match against 10-man Pahang at the Darulaman Stadium on Friday.
In the dramatic 3-1 victory, Elephants’ centreback Herold Goulon was shown a straight red card after only 17 minutes for a last-man challenge on Kpah Sherman.
The Red Eagles then took the lead in the 37th minute via captain Baddrol Bakhtiar but a relentless Pahang drew level in the 42nd through Nur Izzat Awang Mohd.
Liberian striker Sherman restored Kedah’s lead six minutes later with a penalty before the inspirational Baddrol found the target again in the 71st minute.
While Goulon’s dismissal did help matters for Kedah, Aidil stressed that the win had more to do with his charges’ industry.
“In football, I don’t believe in luck. Hard work always make the difference and I salute the boys for that, ” said Aidil.
“It’s not easy playing against 10 men. For me, I feel it’s easier to play against 11. When you play against a team who are a man down, they will be more compact and can frustrate you.
“When we scored the first goal, they immediately came back by utilising a counter-attacking opportunity. At half-time, I told my boys that there is no way we can lose this game and their response in the second half was brilliant.
“We utilised the flanks well to break Pahang down.”
Kedah are now second in the league with 13 points, a point behind JDT.
Meanwhile, Pahang coach Dollah Salleh admitted that Goulon’s dismissal upset his plans.
“Frankly, I’m disappointed with the referee’s decision. I didn’t expect him to give a straight red. After Goulon went off, we were under pressure. We prepared well and were expecting at least a point.
“We fought well in the first half, but in the second half, we lost it.”
Pahang are in the relegation zone at 11th spot, with only four points from six matches.