ALOR SETAR, Dec 3 — Selangor FC head coach Tan Cheng Hoe wants his team to be well-prepared to face the increasingly challenging Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup competition next season.

He said this is because the competition at the Asian level is now seen to have changed, with eligible teams progressively improving their performances.

“What’s important is that we still have time for preparation and our players have the opportunity to enhance their skills. I hope everyone will be more prepared because we don’t want to be defeated by opposing teams,” he told a press conference after the Super League match against Kedah Darul Aman FC (KDA FC) at the Darul Aman Stadium here last night.

Selangor FC were crowned as the runner-up for the 2023 Super League season behind champions JDT, after beating KDA FC 1-0.

Advertisement

Cheng Hoe also described the success of leading Selangor to the AFC Cup as one of his sweetest memories, as he had never taken any team to that level before.

Commenting on the match against KDA FC, he said Branden Gan’s presence in the second half boosted the Red Giants’ performance, ultimately leading to the goal scored by Ayron Del Valle Rodriguez in the 64th minute.

“He (Branden) can play in various positions and his entry brought a new energy to the team because, in the first half, we failed to control the game and our defensive strength was somewhat lacking,” he said.

Advertisement

Meanwhile, KDA FC head coach Mohd Nafuzi Zain said that despite the team’s defeat, he remained proud of the commitment shown by his charges, who successfully prevented Selangor from scoring more goals.

“We had many chances to score, but in the end, Selangor got the goal. I’m satisfied with my team’s commitment and performance,” he said, adding that the focus now is on the upcoming match against Sabah FC on Dec 17 to determine the third place in the Super League standings. — Bernama