PKNP's Abu Bakar determined to produce upsets using young players

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PKNP fielded two 18-year olds at the start of their first leg Malaysia Cup quarter-final match against Kedah on Wednesday.


BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter


Despite the 2-1 defeat to Kedah in their first leg Malaysia Cup quarter-final match, PKNP FC boss Abu Bakar Fadzim was happy to see his charges put up a challenge against the five-time champions.

In the match that initially looked to be in doubt due to a storm that thankfully ended just hours before kick-off, Yashir Pinto opened the scoring in the 37th minute with a wonderful rabona. But the visitors equalised just four minutes into the second half through Fernando Rodriguez' goal, before David Rowley struck with the winner in the 73rd minute.

PKNP vs Kedah match highlights

"I have to praise the fighting spirit shown by my men, who despite only having 48 hours to recover from the previous match, still managed to put up a fight and retain our chances in the second leg.

"We created chances in the first half, but were punished by lapses in our defending in the second, in dead ball situations. But let's face it, Kedah are in their own class; they have the quality, the reputation, the foreign players and the support.

"I took a gamble by fielding three under age players; two 18-year old players Mukhairi Ajmal Mahadi and Aidil Azuan) and the 20-year old goalkeeper (Shafiq Afifi Suhaimi), who have never played at this stage. This is what PKNP are about; we are determined to produce upsets by using unknown players," said the former Perak boss.

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Gol @diogoluis_santo menjadi pemisah suku akhir pertama. ‪. Advantage @officialjohor after first leg in Kuala Terengganu. . ‪#PialaMalaysia2019 #MalaysiaCup2019 ‬

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