The former national player praised his players for their determination and fighting spirit despite playing with nine men against a superior Johor Darul Takzim
By Khalis Rifhan
Despite coming away empty handed, Perak coach Mohd Azraai Khor Abdullah was the happier of the two coaches as he spoke to the media after the match.
Two of his players, Mohd Khairi and Hisyamudin Shaari, were shown a second yellow card towards the end of the first half and Azraai had expected the worse for his team after the break.
“I had initially thought that we would crumble in the second half, playing with nine men, but thankfully the players played well.” said Azraai
“I want to say that I am proud of my players' fighting spirit, even though we were playing with nine men in the second half. We played as warriors tonight and still managed to create chances on goal. That is the most important for me.”
“Compared to our opponents, we had more concrete chances, as they depend on the long shots from outside the penalty box.”
“Even though we leave tonight with no points, I am still happy with their performances.”
Coach Azraai then defended his ultra-defensive tactics but said that it he had never deployed such a strategy before.
”I have never played defensive tactics, but after having two men sent off, we played mostly in our half but we were still able to mount an attack, and we had two chances towards the end.”
“There is still a long way to go in the league and we can learn from this process in the event we face a similar situation in future.”
“Certainly, with being two men down, we had to defend. If I had it my way, I would want to erect gates in front of my penalty box.” said Azraai cheekily.
Back to a serious note, Azraai ended the post-match interview with nothing but praises for his boys again.
“For me, we accept the fact we were outnumbered but the players followed my instructions and able to play our game and stop the opponent's attacks.”
“But nevertheless, I must praise the players tonight. I am satisfied.” said a delighted Azraai.
Perak will next host Felda United, who have yet to register a win in two matches, at the Lumut stadium on January 15.