04 March 2012

Sea of yellow sinks M'sia

Jason Thomas

Sunday, March 4, 2012

HJ FEISAL Hj Eusoff felt the heavens were kind to Brunei last night.

Brunei's 3-0 win over Malaysia in last night's Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT) game was their second victory in the competition, and a result which helps them stay in contention for a place in Wednesday's semi-finals.

"Without God I don't think we would have won the game. God was with us tonight (Saturday)," said Brunei's team manager at the post-match Press conference at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.

"The supporters were also amazing from the beginning until the end. The players really enjoyed playing with the supporters behind them.

"I hope the supporters will turn out in full force again for our last game against Timor Leste on Monday and wear yellow!

"I also appreciate all the support we got from His Royal Highness Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Deputy Sultan, His Royal Highness Prince 'Abdul Malik and other members of the royal family (who were watching the game).

"The players worked very hard and they deserved to win tonight (Saturday). They were able to score those three goals because they were very confident and settled into the game ... Had a lot of touches," he added.

Despite Malaysia's Muhammad Hadin Azman shown his second yellow card four minutes before the break, Brunei were unable to capitalise on their numerical advantage.

Hj Mohd Rosanan Abdullah Samak didn't think it mattered.

"We didn't play defensively (in the second half). We didn't need a goal what was important is that we were confident holding the ball," said the team's assistant coach.

"It doesn't matter whether it's four goals or five ... It's still three points," insisted the ex-national player.

Last night's defeat leaves Malaysia with just one point from three games and out of the running for a place in the last four, and their head coach felt the crowd at the 25,000-seat stadium which was filled to capacity was Malaysia's downfall.

With eight players promoted to the Under-23 team (Harimau Muda A), who are playing in the Singapore League, Malaysia brought a team of Under-19 players to Brunei and they looked the part. "I'm disappointed but what can I do?" said Ismail Ibrahim.

"Playing against the home team and this kind of crowd ... The pressure was on us. My players are not used to playing in this kind of big stadium. There must have been 25,000 or 30,000 people here tonight (Saturday).

"In the second half we tried to stay compact in the middle (but) Brunei played well."The Brunei Times

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