Satiananthan turns attention towards Selangor's confidence and mentality

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Sports Regime
Although Selangor recorded their second win this season on Friday, more of their players are getting injured with each passing week.


BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter


Selangor's 1-0 win against Terengganu in their round seven Super League match on Friday was their first win at home since July 2018, and their first clean sheet in 2019.

It was also their second consecutive win this season, following a lacklustre start.

Speaking to the press after the encounter, the Red Giants boss B. Satiananthan remarked on the continued improvements shown by his men.

"It was a good performance, if a little shaky. In the second half the boys came back and could have scored a lot of goals if they had been a lot smarter. But more importantly, they didn't concede tonight. 

"They have to learn to keep the ball longer because we were leading 1-0. They must not get over-excited and be hit with counter-attacks. But the back four were good and we got the three points.

"This is what the team is about. They have good spirit, they worked hard, I'm happy and it's not just because of the win; it's due to the fact that they worked hard. The way they played in the second half, even if Terengganu had scored the equaliser, I would still be happy with their performance," he explained.

According to the former Felda United head coach, what is crucial currently is his charges' mental state, and their ability to overcome their doubts.

"Part of it is psychological; fans had been saying that we haven't won at home since [July] last year and this has affected the players mentally. I need to work on getting them to overcome this, and I've even roped in the services of a psychologist.

"But tonight's win will help them restore their belief. And at halftime we had a teamtalk which worked. When the game resumed they ceased to play with nerves and started making good passes again," noted Satiananthan.

However, the Red Giants are not quite out of the woods just yet, with their crock list expanding. After the match, midfielder Halim Saari, who had made his national team debut for Malaysia one week earlier, was seen limping off. To make things worse, midfielder Endrick dos Santos had to come off as early as the 19th minute due to what looked like a muscle pull.

On top of Halim, they are already without striker Rufino Segovia (three months), right back Syahmi Safari (one week) and winger Wan Zack Haikal Wan Noor (ACL), as they head into their round two FA Cup tie away to Kelantan this Tuesday.

"Halim had played two games within three days and tonight the pitch was not satisfactory due to the weather. Halim, Faiz Nasir and Syazwan Zainon (who had played for Malaysia) could not last long tonight. That's why our injury list is growing. Syahmi (who played 270 minutes for Malaysia U-22 in the past two weeks) is also out.

"We have to be realistic... Halim's injury seemed serious and now I have to think of the cup tie. But without Rufino, I have to think of another way to get the goals.

"I have to count on the substitute players. They're professionals, they're paid to play and they've been working hard in training. I have to give them a chance and they have to stand up. We can't be crying over injuries or Rufino's absence. I'm not pushing the panic button because I believe in the players. I know they can do the job," he stated.

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