Johor Darul Ta'zim ends their title winning campaign with a 2-1 win over Selangor at Shah Alam Stadium
BY OOI KIN FAI Follow on Twitter
Johor Darul Ta'zim (JDT) closed their Super League season with an away 2-1 win over Selangor as the league closes its curtains for 2016. Pereyra Diaz and Amri Yahyah scored on either side of Hazwan Bakri's equaliser as JDT didn't let the midweek AFC Cup disappointment hamper them.
With an eye on the cup final next week, K. Gunalan opted to rest six of his regulars, most notably Andik Vermansah and Hazwan Bakri only started from the bench. Mauro Olivi earns a rare appearance while N. Arunasalam also gets a start. Likewise with JDT, Mario Gomez also made six changes from the team that lost to Bengaluru FC in midweek.
The Southern Tigers started brighter and have successive chances to score in the 8th, 11th and 12th minute. Two of the chances fell to Pereyra Diaz but the Argentine found Norazlan Razali to be in his element today. The third of the chance came the way of Gary Steven Robbat but he too was to be denied by Norazlan.
The game then descended into a lull until the final 10 minutes of the first half. Diaz again involved but this time saw his 35th minute shot cleared on the line by Arunasalam. Four minutes passed and it was the turn of substitute Amri Yahyah to work Norazlan and the Selangor keeper again passed with flying colours.
Just like the passage of play int he first half, the game became a little quiet at the start of the second half after the excitement that followed towards the end of the opening period. It took until the 64th minute before the game came into life again and it was when JDT took the lead.
A quick counter attack saw another substitute, S. Chanturu with a quite brilliant through ball for Diaz. The league's top scorer decided to round the keeper this time and successfully slotted home to give JDT a 1-0 lead. That was Diaz's 18th of the campaign and cements his place as the league's highest scorer.
Selangor were to strike back on the 71st minute when Hazwan Bakri produced a moment of individual brilliance to first beat Marcos Antonio, and then Farizal Marlias at his near post. The national forward had only been on the pitch six minutes but produced an immediate impact.
Yet The Red Giants would only be levelled for five more minutes before a former prodigal son returned to haunt them. Chanturu again causing havoc down the right hand side and his cut back was finished with aplomb by Amri to put JDT 2-1 up in the 76th minute.
The home side were incensed that they had conceded so quickly after they had equalised and proceeded to vent their frustration through numerous hard fouls that incensed a large JDT crowd. Hafiz Kamal and Raimi Nor would get themselves on bookings for reckless challenges.
2-1 to JDT was the final score and they can be extremely proud of their unbeaten league run in winning the 2016 Super League title, whereas Selangor may have their mind on cup matters.