Longhi asking fans to show patience with Marquez

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Johor Southern Tigers
Johor Darul Ta'zim have one hand on the 2018 Super League title after a 1-0 win over Pahang where Raul Longhi admitted nerves played a part.

With only seven more matches left to play (eight more for JDT and Pahang), it looks like the title will not be leaving the land of Johor for yet another season. JDT opened up a massive 11 points lead over Pahang after securing a tight 1-0 win on Saturday night.

The win at Tan Sri Dato Haji Hassan Yunos Stadium came courtesy of an own goal from Pahang's Bunyamin Omar in the first half but JDT's performance throughout the match more than warrant maximum points.

Raul Longhi gave a debut to Argentine Fernando Elizari and he would have been pleased in the manner the latter performed in his first outing in Malaysian football. Showing great awareness and the ability to pick out a final pass, Elizari is already looking like an upgrade on Harry Novillo.

"The problem today was that we have seven chance to score but couldn't get the second goal. Hence we played with a little bit of anxiety. I'm very happy with the last 10 minutes and the way we controlled the game. Three points was very important because Pahang are a strong team." 

"When have so many chances but can't score the next goal, it will always be difficult. Some players maybe lacking confidence with the ball but this is football. We have 11 points difference with the second team in the Super League and that is important," Longhi told HyppTV after the match.

Another Argentine in Fernando Marquez got his second start in as many weeks but unlike his first match against Perak, did not find the back of the net this time around. However, the lanky striker was still involved in the creation of the only goal of the match, providing the pass to Hariss Harun who took the final shot.

The current JDT head coach do not want to heap pressure on Marquez and instead is calling for fans to give Marquez more time to show his true worth, citing his record in Argentina as one to reference to.

"He need to adapt to our playing style. He arrived one week before this game and he needs more time. But I'm confident in Marquez because he's experienced and showed that he could play in a tough league in Argentina. We need to give confidence to him," added Longhi.

The same two teams will meet again on Tuesday at Darul Makmur Stadium with the blue and red team looking to be the one going into that match full of confidence after this win.

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