Zainal blows his top after loss to Kedah

KUANTAN: Coach Zainal Abidin Hassan was fuming after Pahang fell to a 1-2 defeat by Kedah in their first home match at the Darulmakmur Stadium here on Wednesday. 

He was hoping to build on their opening victory over Penang (2-0) but the defeat exposed weaknesses. 

Zainal conceded that their defence was shaky under pressure and their strikers were not sharp and deadly. 

“Performance-wise, the boys played better than they did against Penang but silly mistakes cost us the match. 

Helter skelter: Pahang defender Norfazly Alias (right) attempts to control the ball as his goalkeeper Mohd Syamsuri Mustaffa and Kedah’sBadrol Bakhtiar slip during their Super League match in Kuantan on Wednesday. Kedah won 2-1.

“Defensive blunders gifted Kedah the goals. Upfront, we were let down by poor finishing. The defeat should be a good lesson for the players. They can ill-afford to make silly mistakes against strong opponents.” 

Pahang's foreign players – Ugandan Bironse Abed and Kenyan Abdurazak Alwy Hussein – hardly made an impact. 

Midfielder Abed played well in patches while striker Hussein even muffed a chance when he had a yawning goal in front of him after beating Kedah goalkeeper Mohd Helmi Eliza. 

Nelson Martin put Kedah ahead in the 44th minute from a free kick and Marlon James sealed victory in the 66th minute. Minutes earlier, V. Saravanan had equalised for the Elephants. 

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