Player Ratings: PKNS 3 Kedah 4

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PKNS and Kedah battled in a seven-goal thriller on Sunday, thanks to in-form players on both sides. Find out who the key men are.


BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter


The 4-3 thriller between PKNS and Kedah produced plenty of beautiful goals and one missed penalty to serve up the best Malaysia Super League clash so far this season, thanks to the fact that players from both sides were on form in the match. Find out who the top performers are.

PKNS

Shahril Saa'ri - 6

The custodian made multiple saves to deny the visitors and their captain Baddrol Bakhtiar, but ultimately allowed himself to be beaten by two curling shots that gave away the three points.

Reuben Kathiripillai - 5

Failed to shackle Baddrol, and ultimately it was his own goal (awarded to Baddrol retrospectively) took the wind out of the hosts' sail.

Rodney Akwensivie - 5

Did not make any obvious mistakes, but his delay in closing down Liridon Krasniqi allowed the midfielder to equalise for the Red Eagles for the second time in the match.

Azmizi Azmi - 5

Standing in as captain and centre back for the injured Safee Sali and Zac Anderson respectively, Azmizi failed to lead his defence line well. He also lost his cool towards the referee near the end of the match after he conceded a freekick, and was lucky not to have even been shown a yellow card.

Qayyum Marjoni - 5

His poor marking led to him losing the ball to teenage star Akhyar Rashid in his own half, and his clumsy attempt to recover the ball only caused him to foul the youngster in his own penalty box, and give away a penalty that led to Kedah's first goal. The whole incident happened mere minutes after teammate Faris Ramli had produced the first of the night's wonder goals to give the hosts the lead.

Mahali Jasuli - 8

Playing in the right wing position, the former JDT man was arguably the hosts' best player in the match. He retook the lead for the Red Ants one minute into the second half with a placed shot from the edge of the box, and closed the goal margin in the dying minutes with a pin-point freekick.

Sivakumar Munusamy - 6

The midfielder was a poor answer to their opponents' midfield stalwarts, and allowed the Red Eagles to boss the middle of the park.

Jonathan Acosta - 6

The Argentinian midfielder failed to marshall the engine room, and allowed the Red Eagles to boss the middle of the park.

Faris Ramli - 8

With Sivakumar and Jonathan unable to provide a secure channel for PKNS attacks in the middle, it was down to their flankers to pick up the slack, and the two wingers more than proved their mettle. Mahali performed that night, and so did Singapore international Faris. He ran rings around Kedah right wing back and Malaysia international Rizal Ghazali, and opened the night's account with a cutback that was then finished with a curler towards the top far corner. He then provided the assist to PKNS' second goal.

Singapore vs Cambodia [13 October 2015]

Faris Ramli. Photo from Getty

Romel Morales - 6

The attacking midfielder failed to combine well with target man Rafael Ramazotti.

Rafael Ramazotti - 5

The former S-League golden boot winner could not score against Kedah even if the goalkeeper had turned his back towards play to have a drink from his bottle. He was sluggish throughout the clash, and failed to hit the target when presented with a chance in the first half. And in the second, when his team depended on him to score a 73rd-minute penalty in order to equalise, the Brazilian only managed a weak shot that Ifwat Akmal Che Kassim could gather safely.

Substitutions:

Jafri Chew - 6

The Malaysia U23 international came on with 15 minutes remaining on the clock, but contributed little to PKNS' effort to draw level.

Daniel Ting - NA

Late substitution.

Khyril Muhymeen - NA

Late substitution.

KEDAH

Ifwat Akmal Che Kassim - 6

Just like his PKNS counterpart, the Malaysia U23 goalkeeper allowed himself to be beaten by amazing goals. But unlike Shahril, Ifwat performed when it mattered the most; saving Ramazotti's penalty to deny the hosts the equaliser.

Rizal Ghazali - 6

PKNS dominated the flanks, so most of Kedah's attacks were launched from the middle. Rizal could not help with the attack as much as he used to as he had Faris to contend with, and he was given a schooling with PKNS' first goal. Following Faris' goal, Rizal gave a more focused performance.

Khairul Helmi Johari - 7

The former team captain was the better Kedah centre back, helping shut out Ramazotti and Romel.

Álvaro Silva - 6

The Spanish-born defender performed adequately, save for the second-half penalty he conceded and got booked for, which luckily for Kedah, was not put away by Ramazotti.

Ariff Farhan Isa - 7

Made up for his difficulty in marking Mahali with a beautiful goal from outside the box; Kedah's fourth of the night.

Andik Vermansah - 7

Had a relatively quiet night as the hosts dominated the flanks, provided the assist to Ariff's goal.

Liridon Krasniqi - 9

While PKNS dominated the flanks, Liridon ensured that the middle of the park was still in Kedah's control and his persistence worked wonders. But helping alone is not enough for the Kedah star, and he bagged a brace in the match; one penalty and the other a wonderful curler.

Akram Mahinan - 7

Provided adequate support in midfield to Liridon.

Baddrol Bakhtiar - 9 (Man of the Match)

While Andik faced a tough time on the left wing, the Malaysia international was in top form down the right. Baddrol threatened the PKNS goal constantly with his shots and freekicks in the first half, and his efforts bore fruit in the second. His assist led to Kedah's second goal, and his low cross later forced an own goal from Reuben that was later credit to him.

Kedah's Baddrol Bakhtiar celebrating his goal against JDT 20/1/2017

Baddrol Bakhtiar. Photo by Muizzuddin Yahaya/CSN

Pablo Pallares - 6

The Spanish forward misfired again in the match, and did not contribute as much as his teammates.

Akhyar Rashid - 7

The teenage star made himself a nuisance to the PKNS defence, and showed persistence and industriousness in the run-up to their first goal; pressing Qayyum to steal the ball and then forcing a foul that led to the penalty. He was taken off in early second half for the more-experienced Sandro da Silva.

Substitutions:

Sandro da Silva - 6

Came on in early second half, but made relatively little impact as compared to his in-form teammates.

Amirul Hisyam Awang Kechik - NA

Late substitution.

Farhan Roslan - NA

Late substitution.

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