The Eagles coach took his spot in the limelight as the Bedok-based club caused an upset to reach the League Cup finalGeylang United's win against Tampines Rovers was not a fluke insisted coach Kanan.
“I said to the players that I had watched Tampines play against Woodlands Wellington and they won the game through long balls tactics," said the Eagles coach.
"This is also the same strategy that they used in the game against us today. So I told my players how to counter Tampines' style of play and we did very well.”
Kanan emphasised the point that his team had no ‘star’ players unlike their opponents and that he is finally seeing the fruits of his labor since abruptly taking over from Mike Wong.
“Of course we started the game a bit shaky, maybe the players were nervous playing against a team such as Tampines with players good for the national team," he said.
"But if you look at Geylang, we have no national players and most of them are young players including two Prime League players.
“Today's performance is the result of the work which I started since I took over the team and it is finally showing in the League Cup. We are bottom of the table in the league and this is the only competition in which we can salvage something for our club’s pride.”
Kanan is already looking forward to the League Cup final and feels that his team will lift the trophy come Saturday, adding: “I am very optimistic and confident for the final against Brunei DPMM on Saturday. We have beaten the top two teams in the league during this competition, Albirex and Tampines, and we are bottom of the table. So I think we are able to take on DPMM.”
Tampines Rovers coach Steven Tan on the other hand was a man of few words as he blamed fatigue and the inability to convert chances for his team's defeat in the semi-final.
“Noh Alam Shah had a fever the night before and so I decided to start him on the bench," said a dejected looking Tan.
"It won’t make much of a difference if he had started as I felt the game against Albirex took a toll on us and took away all our energy.
“That is why we were always second best against Geylang. Credit to the opponents as they stuck to their game-plan and they caught us twice and scored the goals.
“We had lots of chances and sometimes the ball simply refused to go into the back of the net and Geylang was practically putting eleven men behind their area. That is their game plan and it’s succeeded for them.”