PETALING JAYA: Selangor are left with a face-saving task in their remaining matches in Premier I.
They have lost the Charity Shield; suffered the embarrassment of losing to Premier II club side Petaling Jaya Municipal Council (MPPJ) in the second round of the FA Cup; and are out of contention for an automatic berth in the eight-team Super League next season.
The top six teams in Premier I get automatic qualification to the Super League. The remaining two places will be decided in playoffs among the seventh to 10th-placed teams in Premier I and the top four in Premier II.
A ticket to the playoffs is also as good as gone for the Red Giants. At the moment, they are also not sure of getting to defend the Malaysia Cup.
The top 12 teams in Premier I and the top four in Premier II qualify for the Malaysia Cup.
Selangor are now in 11th spot in the 13-team league with 18 points – six points more than basement team Terengganu and one ahead of Malacca. The 29-time Malaysia Cup champions could still finish at the bottom of the table.
If Selangor lose their remaining three matches, Terengganu will finish ahead if they collect at least seven points while Malacca need only three points.
Going by current form, Selangor are in deep trouble. They have lost their last five consecutive matches – against Sarawak (1-2), Kelantan (3-4), Perlis (1-4), Terengganu (1-3) and Pahang (1-2).
Their remaining matches are against teams in the running for the title or in the fight for qualification to the Super League.
Selangor will be up against Sabah at the Likas Stadium in Kota Kinabalu tomorrow followed by matches against defending champions Perak (July 29, home) and Johor FC (Aug 2, away). Selangor have also not won any of their 10 away matches thus far this season.
The Selangor FA (FAS) secretary, Mohamed Hamidin Amin, said yesterday that the team management were looking at ways to ensure the team qualify for the 16-team Malaysia Cup competition.
“The chances of getting into the playoffs to qualify for the Super League are slim. But we should be in the Malaysia Cup. The FAS council will meet on Tuesday to discuss plans to revive of the team,” he said.
Terengganu are doomed to next season's 18-team Premier League, which replaces Premier II. They have no chance of getting into the Super League after crashing to Malacca 0-3 on Tuesday.