Felda went into the Super League encounter against Terengganu FC on Friday with plenty of confidence after knocking out Selangor in the FA Cup in midweek but the positive mood did not last after a 2-1 defeat at Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium.
Nidzam Jamil's boys matched Terengganu for large parts of the match but eventually went behind after a brilliant Tchetche Kipre solo effort in the 50th minute. Staying in the game, Felda had chances to equaliser but found Suffian Rahman to be in inspired form.
With the match approaching full time, a defensive lapse of concentration from captain Jasazrin Jamaluddin enabled Kipre to pick up a back pass that came up short to score the second. That goal killed off the tie as a contest, even though Masaki Watanabe did pull a goal back deep into additional time.
"There’s a big gap between us and Terengganu. They are a big team and they seldom make mistakes. That is what differentiate us and them. If we want to survive in the league, we have to minimise our mistakes. It’s all a process and I can’t say how long we need but I’m sure we can work on it.
"We at Felda cannot expect miracles to happen every week. We have to be realistic because we are a team that relies on working hard. But sometimes that isn’t enough because we still need to find that bit of quality and luck," said Nidzam after the match.
Star winger Hadin Azman was missing from the match and his absence was sorely missed by Felda, who does not possess too many high quality players. The Malaysian international is currently out with a knee injury and is not expected to be back for at least two weeks.
Nidzam and Felda will have to soldier on without him in the coming weeks and the first test will be a home tie against Melaka on April 26 that will quickly be followed by an enticing FA Cup quarterfinal first leg clash against Kuala Lumpur.
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