The LionsXII gaffer gave a damning verdict on his team’s inability to score despite creating countless chances against a side who had previously not registered a single away point“Just name me some players whom we can sign," Fandi Ahmad asked at one point during the post-match press conference, in reference to his side's goalscoring woes.
That seemed to be the only solution for the LionsXII coach, who cut a frustrated figure after watching his misfiring team stumble to a 1-1 draw against T-Team FC on Saturday night at the Jalan Besar Stadium.
The visitors had not registered a single point on their travels prior to the game and the task of notching a third consecutive victory looked a pretty straightforward one for the hosts on paper.
It had looked like things were going according to plan after Safuwan Baharudin’s first-half strike, the centre-back's second in as many games, gave the defending Malaysia Super League champions the lead. But the LionsXII proceeded to squander a host of chances and their profligacy cost them when Nelson San Martin curled home a superb free-kick just after the hour mark.
There were barely any smiles from Fandi as he faced the media and criticised his side’s inability to finish off the game.
“We had chances after chances; I reminded them [during half-time that] in the second half we must go for the kill, if not they will come back,” he lamented.
“True enough, they did. We just lost focus. But we cannot be blaming the defense. It’s [all about] the strikers. If every time we need a defender to score a goal, there is something wrong with us. If we are presented with a dozen chances and can’t even put one in, there is a problem.
“It’s very tiring and demoralising for the team and for the fans as well. I can’t believe we couldn't even put in one goal; we had so many near-open chances.”
Fandi didn’t mince his words as he went as far as to say that the performance was the most disappointing one he has seen from the team so far.
“We played so well in the first half but in the second half, they went to sleep," he stated bluntly.
"I am disappointed with some individuals; never in my coaching career have I seen a team who can dominate but cannot score goals.
“That is the biggest disappointment. I would rather play s*** football and win games.
“We have to forget about it. I hope we can recover. If you have any names in the league, please [tell me] - we are looking."
Meanwhile, T-Team coach Azraai Khor was elated with their first away point of the season at the home of the reigning league champions.
“I salute the boys, they came back strongly in the second half,” he beamed.
“We got what we wanted. It’s a huge achievement for a small team to steal a point at the ions den; it’s not easy.
“You’re playing with the league champions; seldom do teams come here and win or draw. For teams like us, I think it’s a good result.”
The LionsXII’s next match is at Selayang next Saturday against Sime Darby FC.