Jerome may feature tonight
Published on: Monday, April 14, 2014

Kota Kinabalu: Surprises may be in store tonight as Sabah take on Penang in the Premier League clash at the Likas Stadium at 8.15pm.Liberian striker Jerome Doe may get the chance to lead the Sabah attack with news that Syrian Marwan Sayedeh is out with a match suspension.

Although there was no official confirmation from the Sabah Football Association officials, it was understood that they are working hard behind the scene to try to get him at least on the bench for the match tonight.

The team are currently left high and dry with Farid Ideris out injured and Zainizam Marjan playing for the reserves and there is no proven striker in sight with Marwan also out.

Rozaimi Abd Rahman who has been out since early this season may also get to see action as he is recovering well from his injury, but most likely as a second half substitute if he does make it.

Milomir Seslija's side who are chasing an automatic berth in the Malaysia Cup will need to forget their 0-1 loss to PBAPP on Friday and try to upset the odds by getting a win against the high flying islanders who are second in the table standing after 12 matches played while Sabah are in seventh place, 10 points adrift.

The match on Friday was marred by controversial refereeing decisions and Sabah were denied at least three sure penalties and four players who were in a very good position to score were instead stopped by the referee and flashed the yellow card.

It was a difficult game with several decisions going against them especially with so many young players in the team and credit must be given to them as they managed to fight till the very end.

The players must learn from the defeat and mustn't give up, and have to keep going because they still have the chance to win the fourth spot.

Only four points separate them from Negeri Sembilan who are placed in the final spot at the moment.

It is also hoped that the nasty experience will spur the players to rise to the occasion and gain revenge over their opponents tonight whom they lost 0-3 in the first round.

"Penang are a very good team and we will try our best to beat them and what we need is the support of the fans," said Milomir on Sunday.

"They must understand that we have many young players in the team and we cannot turn them into winners overnight."

"We are not trying to make any excuses but for the match tomorrow we have to be tactically prepared to match them and get a victory."

"It wasn't easy with only 16 players available against a top team and I will try to motivate them to do their best on the pitch and believe me, this team may be raw but there is a chance that they can do it."

He said he is hoping that influential left back Julamri Muhammad will make the team as there are too many first team players out of the starting line-up.

"We have seven Under-22 players in the team against PBAPP and these young players are trying their best to stamp their mark which is not an easy task and despite the setback, they didn't play too badly against PBAPP."

Meanwhile, two football matches will be held today and the Penang match will be preceded by the afternoon match between the Sabah President Cup squad and Perak at the Penampang Stadium starting at 4.15pm.

The junior team who may still have a mathematical chance of qualifying for the knockout stage after their 0-0 draw with Melaka on Thursday, will have no option but to win and hope their closest rivals will crumble at the run-in, allowing them to sneak through at the final stretch.

Coach Burhan Ajui said despite the must-win situation, they may opt for a few Under-19 players in the match today and that will also depend on the availability.

"There will not be many changes from the line-up that played against Melaka on Thursday with Zainizam Marjan and Reithaudin Emran still in the team to guide the juniors, but I may play a few juniors from the Under-19 squad if they are available," he said.


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