Durakovic wants Perak to utilise home advantage to reach semis

Vincent Phoon/CSN
Perak will miss influential Yashir Pinto as The Bos Gaurus seek to overturn a 1-3 defeat in the first leg against Pahang in the Malaysia Cup

Perak were the only away side from the first leg of the Malaysia Cup quartefinals that didn't win on the road and they face an uphill battle against Pahang in the return leg scheduled to be played on Sunday.

Things are not helped that Mehmet Durakovic will also be missing the influential Yashir Pinto who has returned to Chile to recover from his injury, on top of the injury suffered by Hafiz Kamal who is out for the rest of the 2017 season.

Still, only needing two goals to turn the tie back into their favour, Gilmar Filho's second half goal at Darul Makmur Stadium could yet proved to be crucial in the encounter at Perak Stadium.

"It's not going to be easy. Everyone knows Pahang are a good side who's been together 3 - 4 years. They have good foreigners and local players. But we're playing at home and we've got nothing to lose." 

"We've got the crowd behind us. We'll give our best shot, it's not impossible. We'll try and attack and to win this game because Perak haven't been in the semi-final for so many years.

"It's very important to keep our concentration throughout. We played well in Kuantan and it was only 5 minutes of madness that they scored 3 goals. We played well the whole game. In the second half we killed them.

"At the end of the day we lost 3-1 but their goal keeper got the man of the match. Shows we created a lot of chances. It's very important that we're fighting for 90 minutes," Durakovic told Goal ahead of return fixture.

In between these two legs, Perak also suffered a disappointing defeat to relegation battlers Melaka United, losing their second away game in a row with the same margin of 3-1. The Australian Durakovic however isn't too perturbed by that result but laments the loss of two important players for the Pahang match.

"I want to win every game but honestly we really really missed Hafiz Kamal. He's out for whole year. Also Pinto, he's gone to Chile last night [Friday] to have a look at his achilles. These are two players who have been in my starting XI for the whole year and now to miss them in the crucial part of the season is tough." 

"I have other players who can play and hopefully they will do well. But you can't buy experience, both have been my rock for the whole year," added Durakovic.

Among those that could feature in their stead are Shahrul Saad, Ahmad Khairil Anuar and Hadi Yahya - all of whom possess relative experience that could help Perak's cause to reach their first Malaysia Cup semi-final since 2006.