Pahang to mount challenge for top two finish in Super League

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Fresh from winning the FA Cup for the third time with a 2-0 win over Selangor in the final at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Saturday, a highly motivated Pahang is ready to face PKNP (Perak SEDC) at home on Wednesday.

And it was the Perak club that was shown the exit in the FA Cup semi-finals on a 3-2 aggregate in the two-leg FA Cup semi-finals. For the record, PKNP held Pahang to a 1-1 draw in the first-leg in Kuantan before Pahang won the return-leg 2-1 in Ipoh.

There is added reason to be motivated to face PKNP for Dollah Salleh and company with the news that the Elephants may get to feature in next year’s AFC Champions League qualifying rounds after all.

Pahang was banned by the FA of Malaysia (FAM) for two years after the East Coast giants did not want to play in this year’s AFC Cup in the wake of Kedah not getting an AFC license to compete.

Winning the FA Cup qualifies Pahang for next year’s AFC Champions League qualifying tournament but the ban, which runs through 2020, effectively bars Pahang’s participation.

However, the Malaysian Football League (MFL) chairman Major-General Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim, has called on the FAM to review the ban on Pahang.

In congratulating Pahang on winning the FA Cup, Tunku Ismail, in a posting on the Southern Tigers Facebook said: “For sporting reasons, I hope the FAM will re-evaluate the punishment handed to Pahang previously.”

This is certainly a boost to Pahang for the match against PKNP although may have to reshuffle his lineup and strategies due to the unavailability of some key players. RIZAL ABDULLAH 


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