A penalty from Lee Kwan Woo settled the affair on a Saturday afternoon against a determined Young Tigers side
|FROM PASIR GUDANG STADIUM
By Eddie Ridzwan
A game filled with mistakes and errors galore saw Home United walk away from Pasir Gudang with a 1-0 victory over hosts Harimau Muda ‘B’ on a scorching Saturday afternoon.
The Singapore side did not have it easy throughout the match as Harimau Muda constantly passed the ball about and threatened with their pace, but a penalty from Korean star Lee Kwan Woo settled the tie.
Harimau Muda had the first chance of the game in the first minute of play when a lapse in Home's defence saw Faizat Ghazli glide into the box to get to the ball, but his shot went out for a corner instead.
Dimunitive winger Maxsius Musa was alert in the 11th minute to latch onto a mistake by a Home player and with the ball at his feet, the 20-year-old began a trademark surging run into the penalty box. However, his final pass was not met by the onrushing Faizat, due to a combination of a mis-step and a pothole in the pitch.
The deadlock was broken in the 19th minute, courtesy of a well-struck spot-kick from Lee.
Firdaus Idros was brought down in the penalty box by Syawal Nordin after a great run down the right wing and Lee stepped up to confidently send the penalty almost through the middle, much to the delight of the thirty-odd away fans.
Maxsius almost pulled one back when he leapt highest in the penalty box to meet a cross, but the resulting header went over the bar.
The Malaysian was once again in the thick of things as he was tripped by Nor Azli Yusoff, earning the 30-year-old a yellow card and placing him on the suspension list for the next match.
Masato Fukui was forced out of the game 10 minutes before half time as he seemed to have issues with his ankle following a tackle.
Shahril Jantan was finally served with some action as he pulled off a reflex save at his near post in the hour mark to deny Harimau Muda the equalizer.
Aliff Shafaein, who had come on for Lee Kwan Woo, then attempted a delicate chip over the keeper after a fast counter-attacking move by the Protectors, but the ball floated above the bar.
In the end, the Protectors held on to secure all three points, which pushed them into fifth place in the table.