JOHOR BAHRU, 3 Oct – Johor Darul Takzim (JDT) who clinched the Malaysian Super League title for the seventh consecutive time on Sunday after a 4-1 win over Sabah owes it all to the club owner His Royal Highness Brigadier General Tunku Ismail Ibni Sultan Ibrahim.
The Crown Prince of Johor who took over the club in 2013 and a year later clinched the league title – transforming JDT into a football powerhouse in the country as the Southern Tigers brushed aside big names like Selangor, Kedah, Perak, Terengganu and Kelantan.
JDT became a brand name in the country as the Southern Tigers and thus began the reign of the Johor outfit and along the way established professionalism in every aspect of the game – both on and off the pitch.
The team also won the Charity Shield five times – in 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019 and 2020 while they won the Malaysia Cup twice (2017 and 2019) and the FA Cup in 2016.
In the continental championships JDT won the AFC Cup in 2015 – the first Malaysian team to achieve that success.
JDT was never in doubt of landing their seventh league title and the 4-1 win over Sabah at the Sultan Ibrahim Stadium in Iskandar Puteri was testimony of JDT’s supremacy on the field at the state of the art stadium.
Coach Benjamin Mora said after the win over Sabah: “We had the eagerness and mentality to win” – and this, according to Mora, made all the difference for the team.
In the same breath the Mexican was quick to point out that “one player” who made or rather makes all the difference to the JDT team is ”TMJ” (Tunku Ismail).
“TMJ is the key player in JDT…we owe our success to him. Without him it would have been difficult for JDT’s achievements so far. There is still lot more to do as we look to win more titles, both, local and international.”
The Super League title confirmed JDT’s place in the AFC Champions League for new season and JDT is not going to rest on its laurels with the Malaysia Cup competition next on te list for MFL.
”I am emotional winning the (Super League) title. I am happy to play my small part and be part of the winning team. My stay here has been memorable and I have been here five years…so the emotions.”
The Mexican also revealed that JDT missed its “family” in celebrating the seventh league title and this “family” is the fans who had to follow the strict SOP due to the Coronavirus pandemic. He described the Covid-19 pandemic as “‘difficult times” for him but he did enough for JDT to retain the league title.
JDT’s last match is away against Melaka United on Oct 10.

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