|FROM JALAN BESAR STADIUM
By Eddie Ridzwan
The LionsXII are now top of the Malaysian Super League table after a narrow 1-0 win over Negeri Sembilan at Jalan Besar Stadium on Saturday night, which was their fifth consecutive home victory.
Coach V. Sundramoothy was relieved at collecting all three points in a very close encounter, and pointed out that bagging three points was all that mattered.
“I feel that... a 1-0 win [is better] as compared to not winning at all,” the former Singapore international said.
“The games are getting tougher as the season goes by. They [Negeri Sembilan] are a good team. I noticed that they tend to lose games in the dying minutes of a game. At that moment [of the games] is when they lose concentration and today, we got stronger as we’re playing at home."
Sundram was also full of praise for skipper Shahril Ishak, who finally scored again since he found the back of the net in the opening game against ATM FA.
“He has not scored for a while but he has been working hard in training and I told him to keep his head up," he revealed.
"He did really well today; he holds up the ball well, he threads good passes and [is] also capable of crossing.
“Similarly for Fazrul [Nawaz], he has been trying his best too and that, is an indication of a good player. He got a few chances but the goalkeeper was at hand to save."
The 47-year-old says that it "feels great" to top the table with a game still in hand, but was keen to emphasize that much work still laid ahead.
“There are still 12 more games to go for the season," Sundram cautioned. "After this week, we will have to focus and work towards the Perak match."
Man of the moment, Shahril, shared his thoughts on the win and paid tribute to the home support as well.
“The win is good, it feels good to be on top of the table but we had to keep going till the end," he reflected.
"Special credit also goes to the fans for their continuous support. The win today was not about me or the team, it is about the fans."
The LionsXII will next host Perak FA on April 6.