FELDA United 2-3 Johor DT: Southern Tigers edge closer to MSL title

There was so much of fanfare surrounding the top-of-the-table clash between FELDA United and league leaders Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT), considering they were only separated by four points with four more games left to play.

Thankfully, the game lived up to expectations as the Southern Tigers beat FELDA 3-2 in a game full of controversy and drama at the Tun Abdul Razak Stadium, earlier tonight.

Irfan Bakti’s side had an early chance in the first minute with Forkey Doe looking to threaten JDT’s defence, but it was effectively dealt with by skipper Safiq Rahim. The Southern Tigers controlled the half from then on and it looked like they took the lead when Safiq’s free-kick hit the crossbar and bounced off the line, but the goal was not given by the officials.

Photo Credit: Johor Southern Tigers
Photo Credit: Johor Southern Tigers

JDT’s dominance was rewarded half-hour into the game when substitute player Amri Yahyah broke the deadlock with a clinical left-footed volley. The Selangor-born player won his side a penalty six minutes later after he was fouled by Nor Fazly Alias, and Juan Martin Lucero dispatched it to send JDT into cruise control.

FELDA were clearly struggling with the Southern Tigers’ high pressing game as they were limited to half-chances from outside the box, but they quickly pulled one back via Syahid Zaidon, whose shot bounced off both posts before hitting the back of the net. The equalizer came right on the stroke of half-time when Forkey Doe’s cross was flicked on by Zahrahan to the path of Hadin Azman, who maintained his composure to beat Izham Tarmizi.

Another goal dispute happened soon after when Jorge Pereyra Diaz looked to have restored JDT’s lead but his effort was cleared off the line, much to the anger of Mario Gomez and co. as they swarmed the unconvinced linesman after the half-time whistle was blown.

Photo Credit: Johor Southern Tigers
Photo Credit: Johor Southern Tigers

The Fighters started the second 45 minutes in a more convincing manner to complete the perfect comeback, but they were dealt a blow when the clock hit the hour mark as Fazly Alias received his marching orders after receiving a second yellow card.

FELDA’s misery was compounded when Aidil Zafuan scored JDT’s third with an easy tap-in from Diaz’s cross. It was game, set and match by then as Mario Gomez’s side controlled the remainder of the fixture with ease to collect a hard-earned three points. The Boys of Straits will travel back south in a jubilant mood with the prospect of defending their Super League title looms ever closer.

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