PETALING JAYA: Kuala Lumpur coach Bojan Hodak is not reaching for the panic button yet despite two goalless draws in their pre-season friendlies.
Despite having top strikers Tchetche Kipre and Herlison Caion in their side, many expect Kuala Lumpur’s goalscoring problems from last season will end.
But after being held by Terengganu and Kelantan United, there were concerns, though Hodak seemed unperturbed.
“In the first match, both teams were not physically fit, our players were a bit heavy. They will look a bit better after a few more friendly games,” said the Croatian.
“I believe the exposure against Terengganu was strong for the first match, but it was good to see who can play and who cannot. They are fighting for their places. I am starting fresh this season.
“To be honest, Kipre and Caion showed good moves, but we are not used to playing players who run into spaces. We need matches and training to adapt to that system.
“All this while, we didn’t play with a solid number nine, so our style of play was different. Now with two number nines, we will make some adjustments and the boys will have to get used to it.”
Hodak hopes the City Boys will finish better than their sixth placing last season.
And he wants his players to continue being the surprise package especially in Cup competitions – FA and Malaysia Cup.
Since joining Kuala Lumpur in 2021, Hodak won the Malaysia Cup that same year and led them to the AFC Cup final last year where they lost to Omani club Al-Seeb 0-3.
With his assistant Nenad Bacina departing to join a football academy in South Arabia, Hodak has a new Croatian assistant, Miroslav Kuljanac, who he believes has what it takes to emulate Bacina.
“It was easy to work with Nenad as we’ve been together for seven years. But before this, I was working with other people in Kelantan and China.
“Milo is quite a funny guy. The guys have accepted him already. He has experience in Europe and will replace Nenad well. He knows the culture, environment and food. So, he is solid!”