Sundram: Less pressure on LionsXII in Malaysia Cup due to MSL triumph

The former Singapore international believes his team will be more relaxed having won the league but is aware that the other Malaysian sides will go all out against them
Having recently won the Malaysian Super League (MSL) title, the LionsXII will have the chance to do a Double when their Malaysia Cup campaign kicks off this Tuesday, August 20.

Captain Shahril Ishak will lead his men out to face Premier League side Kedah FA at the Jalan Besar Stadium, a venue at which they were unbeaten throughout the 2013 MSL season.

The other two sides drawn in Group D alongside them are Premier League champions Sarawak FA and fellow MSL team Perak FA.

One might think the LionsXII will be under pressure to do well in the competition having won the league, but coach V. Sundramoorthy begs to difer.

"There’s less pressure because we won the league; by winning the league, the boys are more relaxed and when you are relaxed, you work hard and I think there’s a chance of [us] doing well," he told Goal Singapore.

The former Singapore international was speaking after a press conference for the 2013 Singapore IG Masters Football Sixes, where he will star for the Singapore Legends come this October.

Sundram is also acutely aware that the other teams will all be fired up when they come up against his side due to the traditional rivalry between both countries, and asserts that they have to give their all in order to stand any chance of winning the tournament.

"It’s always tough, the Malaysia Cup [because] it’s a traditional tournament and I believe the Malaysian teams will really gear up to perform against us," he said.

"We must be at our best and play at our best to get something out of the tournament."

LionsXII Malaysia Cup Group Stage Fixtures

Aug 20 (Tuesday) vs Kedah – H

Aug 24 (Saturday) vs Sarawak – A

Aug 27 (Tuesday) vs Perak – A 

Aug 31 (Saturday) vs Perak – H

Sep 18 (Wednesday) vs Sarawak – H

Sep 21 (Saturday) vs Kedah - A

*Home matches will be played at the Jalan Besar Stadium at 7.45p.m while away matches will kick off at 8.45p.m.