PETALING JAYA: With Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) sealing the Super League title early, the battle has now shifted to Kedah and Selangor as they fight to secure second spot.
Both teams chalked up important wins last week to keep the rivalry going.
Kedah, the only team to snatch a point from JDT following their 3-3 draw on Aug 26, played a patient game to secure a narrow 1-0 win over hosts Kuala Lumpur on Saturday while Selangor thrashed Terengganu 4-0 on Friday.
The Red Giants are in second position with 52 points, having played 23 matches while Kedah are in third spot with 47 points but have a game in hand.
Kedah coach Nafuzi Zain admitted Selangor have the slight edge but he would not concede the battle until the last game.
The northern side have a home match against Negri Sembilan (Oct 28) and and play away against Kelantan (Nov 24) and Sabah (Dec 17) but the key tie could come when they host Selangor on Dec 2.
“Currently, Selangor have the advantage but we want to fight all the way,” said Nafuzi.
‘We have to win our remaining matches. If we do that, we should be able to overtake Selangor.”
It was also crucial for Nafuzi’s team to beat in-form KL and they played an effective game to keep the home side at bay to win through an Ifedayo Olusegun penalty in the dying seconds of the first half.
“We played well and everyone stuck to our game plan. In the end, one goal was enough for us to return with three points,” said Nafuzi.
“KL were aggressive in the first half and they continued looking for the equaliser but our players were quite disciplined and held firm.”
Nafuzi’s team will need the same kind of discipline and commitment in their last four matches, especially in that crucial one against Selangor.