'That is football, anything can happen' - Harimau Muda A assistant coach Hassan Sazali on his team's shock loss to Courts Young Lions

Loss of key players to the national squad and trials abroad were cited as reasons for defeat while, Robin Chitrakar hoped for continuation
Harimau Muda A assistant coach Hassan Sazali was quick to deflect his team's loss, citing the loss of key players to overseas trials and call-ups to the national squad.

“We came into the game with very limited players," said Hassan.

"We only had thirteen outfield players and two goalkeepers available for the game.

“Two of our players are in Japan for trials and another three players are with the Malaysia senior team for upcoming friendlies.

“Even though we lost, all our players worked hard in the game. We played better but we ended up losing the game.”

Hassan revealed that his team had targeted wins against their opponent: “We had come to Singapore targeting maximum points this week against Courts Young Lions and in our next game against Albirex Niigata (S), but that is football, anything can happen.”

“Hopefully our players recover quickly and prepare themselves for our next match.”

Hassan also said that they were unable to penetrate the defence even with more attacking chances in the latter stages of the game.

“We tried to come back into the game in the second half and we had made a change in our tactics and we pressed them hard," he added.

“We had lots of attack in the second half and we tried to break through the opponent's defence but they are very disciplined at the back.”

Cubs coach, Robin Chitrakar, congratulated his boys for their wonderful performance: “The boys definitely did well today to secure all three points. They performed and created lots of chances in the game.”

“We tried to keep the opponents as far away from our goal as possible. But then again it was a tough game for us as you can see that they were pouring towards our goal.

“But my boys stayed composed and played as a unit. We did well to contain their attack. We also had a couple of chances towards the end and this shows we did not let our game down even though we were a goal up. Credits have to be given to the boys for this.”

Chitrakar felt that such a game was good for team developments hoped that they will be able to continue their fine form in their next S.League fixture.

“The team will continue to improve from this game," he said.

"They have grown from the start of the season and are now playing together as a team.

“We have to continue this type of performance in our next game. We can’t play well in one game and not the next. We got to build the momentum from here.”