KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 28 – Big spenders Selangor FC were handed a harsh reality that it will not be easy in the Super League this season as Kuala Lumpur United FC grabbed the inaugural Piala Prihatin (Caring Cup) 4-2 on penalties at the Kuala Lumpur Football Stadium in Cheras on Saturday.
The Klang Valley derby was much awaited by football fans in the country before the new season kicks off on March 5 with Johor Darul Takzim (JDT) taking Kedah for the Charity Shield at the Sultan Ibrahim Stadium in Iskandar Puteri, Johor Bahru.
The match ended scoreless in regulation time and the outcome in the lottery, favored the City Boys. For KL chief coach Bojan Hodak it did not matter how his team won the silverware.
”A win is still a win. It does not matter how it was achieved. This is a morale booster for the team. There are shortcomings in the team but we will work on ironing that out,” said Hodak.
The 49-year-old Croatian is back in Malaysia to light up the M-League and has a one plus one contract with the team.
He comes with strong credentials having coached the National Under-19 team that won the ASEAN Football Federation Under-18 championships in 2018.
He also won a treble with Kelantan (the League Cup, the FA Cup, and Malaysia Cup) in 2012.
Coming back to the match against the much-hyped Selangor outfit under German coach Karsten Neitzel who brought in his own back-up staff in coaching and also handpicked German players Tim Heubach (defender) Manuel Konrad (midfielder).
Konrad took Selangor’s first kick in the shootout and blew it. He will remember his first competitive match in Malaysia when he had his spot-kick saved by KL goalkeeper, Kevin Mendoza.
KL grew in confidence after this and scored four of their penalties through skipper Paulo Josue, Dominique da Sylva, Hadin Azman and the evergreen Indra Putra Mahayuddin.
Selangor scored through Singapore international Safuwan Baharuddin and Ifedayo Olusegun. The other foreign player to muff his spot-kick was Swiss player, Oliver Buff who sent his attempt over the bar.
Indra Putra would have sealed the match for KL in the last minute of play but he failed to connect a pinpoint cross from the left inside the six-yard box.
Selangor too had their chances in the first half but Ifedayo and Dominique muffed their opportunities.
Selangor’s new signing Shahrel Fikri lasted only seven minutes before limping off with an injury. The injury-prone international played for Perak last season.

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