BY ZULHILMI ZAINAL Follow on Twitter
But unlike in their previous matches, the team went straight into the dressing room, instead of celebrating the win with the fans and their ultras.
In the post-match press conference, head coach B. Satiananthan apologised for his charges' absence, and explained his own non-appearance.
"I apologise for the players' failure to go up to the fans and ultras and show them appreciation after the match. I had an interview [with the match broadcaster] at the time. When I asked the players afterwards, they said they were simply tired because of the pitch condition, the environment and the pressure. They are all sorry and I apologise on their behalf too. In the future, I will make sure they go up to the fans regardless whether we win or lose.
"I also want to respond to the comments saying that I only face the fans when we win; I have to speak in the match broadcaster's post-game interview, with the failure to do so resulting in me getting fined. That's one of the competition rules," explained the former Felda United coach.
Despite Satiananthan's apology, this is not the first time in the past month that his charges have run into trouble with the fans; theirs and those of the opponents'. In their encounter against Melaka United earlier this month, goalkeeper Farizal Harun lashed out at their own supporters for criticising him, while in their clash against Perak in the following week, winger Nurridzuan Abu Hassan openly raised his middle fingers towards the opposition fans after he was sent off. Both later apologised for their behaviours.
Speaking on the match itself, the 60-year old trainer expressed his surprise at their opponents' inability to play as well as he had expected them to.
"I was surprised that PKNP couldn't play well today," he opined. "They did not create a lot of problems for us. My men were not entirely good, our build-up play was good, but we couldn't capitalise on the numerous chances we had.
"But credit must be given to my boys; they scored the goals, kept going and took us up to third place [with the win]."
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