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Malaysia v UAE

Being on same page helps Gan's Malaysia return

7:58 AM WAT 09/09/2019
Brendan Gan, Johor Darul Ta'zim v Perak, Super League, 3 Feb 2019
Despite not having featured for Malaysia for three years, Brendan Gan returned to starring role in his latest two outings for Harimau Malaya.

BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter

It's as if he never left.

Malaysia midfielder Brendan Gan's start against Jordan in their August 30 friendly at home was his first appearance for the Harimau Malaya in three years.

Despite the long absence from the national team due to a lengthy ACL injury, the Australian-born picked up where he last left off, to emerge as one of the home side's best performers in the 1-0 defeat.

He would star for Malaysia again one week later, in Malaysia's matchday one World Cup Asian qualifiers Group G encounter, edging arch rivals Indonesia 3-2 away, with Gan involved in the visitors' dramatic last-minute winner.

He is likely to be handed another start on Tuesday, when Malaysia host UAE in their matchday two group encounter.

Asked by Goal about the ease with which he has been able to slot in a side who has been under the leadership of head coach Tan Cheng Hoe for a year and a half, the Perak man replied that it only happened due to the team's openness.

"It's down to what the coach has put in front of the players; they welcome new players with open arms, we're fighting for the same cause after all.

"We face off against each other in the [Malaysian] league but when it comes to the national team we fight for the country. We all have one goal in mind, and that's too help Malaysian football progress.

"It's very easy to assimilate when you come into a team that is welcoming and wanting to do the same thing as yourself," explained the 31- year old player on Monday.

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