BY ZULHILMI ZAINAL Follow on Twitter
Following a shock 5-2 pre-season friendly match defeat to second-tier side UKM FC on Tuesday, Selangor bounced back with a 6-0 friendly win on Friday.
Their opponents, Puchong Fuerza FC may have only been a non-league side, but the result should restore their confidence while preparing for the 2019 season.
Head coach B. Satiananthan commented on the match that was held in Subang Jaya.
"Although it was only against an amateur side, I want my men to be like Manchester City, who thumped their opponents 9-0 recently. We have to respect our opponents," he said, referring to the English juggernauts' mauling of Burton in their first leg League Cup semi-final encounter on Thursday.
"I am happy with around 70 per cent of my players, but they have to improve on their finishing. The opponents had one shot on goal, which means that my team needs to work harder to stop this from happening.
"It's a test match for the players who can already play for 80, 90 minutes; I wanted to push their fitness level farther," said the former Malaysia and Felda United boss.
And he intends to push them further, when the team travels to Thailand next week, for a series of three friendlies in the neighbouring country.
The Red Giants are set to face Thai League 1 champions Chonburi FC, top-tier side Samut Prakan City (formerly Pattaya United), and second division club Thai Honda, with all three clubs based in or near the capital city of Bangkok.
They will depart for Thailand on January 13, and return on January 18.
"Everyone knows that club football there is of a higher level, and this is the crucial part for the players. I want to see how my players respond in matches against tougher opponents.
"I also want to work on their teamwork, as well as their mental and physical preparations. I'll be observing these aspects in the three friendlies.
"In addition to this, I want to see their shape in match situations, and to see every squad member capable of playing the full 90 minutes. We'll see how it goes," he explained.
He also commented on star striker Rufino Segovia, who on Friday played in his first friendly since rejoining the squad ahead of the season.
True to form, the Spaniard, who was the previous season's Super League top-scorer, netted a brace against Fuerza despite only playing in the first 45 minutes.
"Rufino played well despite it being his first pre-season friendly, and the fact that he was only fielded so he could regain his form and fitness.
"He still needs time to combine with his teammates, and to work on his fitness. He's a professional, and I'm not worried [on his fitness]. But he needs to work on his chemistry with Endrick [Dos Santos], Faiz [Nasir], Antonio [German], Wan Zack and the back four. I want him to work on this while we're in Thailand," remarked Satiananthan.
Also present during the friendly was their final foreign signing, former Negeri Sembilan and Adelaide United centre back Taylor Regan, who did not feature in the encounter as he had only arrived in Malaysia one day earlier.
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