Alberts: Tough but we’ve gone too far to give up

BIG MATCH ATMOSPHERE: Sarawak’s Zamri Morshidi (left) contesting the ball against Pahang players in front of the capacity crowd at Darul Makmur Stadium, Kuantan last Saturday. — Bernama Photo.

KUCHING: Sarawak failed to handle the big match atmosphere and gave away possession too easily against Pahang last Saturday.

According to head coach Robert Alberts, these were the key factors behind the 1-3 defeat in the first leg of the semi-final at Darul Makmur Stadium, Kuantan.

What is left is for the Crocs to bounce back in the second leg.

“Whatever it is, we have gone this far and we are not ready to give up just yet,” Alberts pledged. The match saw all three of Pahang’s goals coming in the first half in an eight-minute spell from the 30th to the 38th minute.

Sarawak’s consolation came just before half-time thanks to a Shahrol Saperi long-range effort. Alberts conceded that it would be tough in the second leg next week.

But as long as the Crocs can learn from their mistakes, Alberts prefers to remain optimistic that Sarawak still have a shot at the Malaysia Cup final.

Meanwhile, Pahang head coach Dollah Salleh was happy to have two-goal cushion going to the next clash in Kuching. But he is keenly aware of the home ground advantage that the Crocs will enjoy for the second leg in Kuching, in front of their own fans.

“Sarawak have the away goal and we should be aware of how the away goal rules can go against us,” he added.

The Sarawak-Pahang clash in Kuantan saw a friendly atmosphere as fans from both teams warmly greeted each other after the match.

The second leg of the Malaysia Cup semi-final between the two teams will be played at Stadium Negeri, Kuching next Saturday (Oct 26).

Read more: Borneo Post


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