Pahang have won the FA Cup after a come-from-behind 2-1 win against Felda United in the final at the Shah Alam Stadium.
Goals from substitute Faizol Hussin and Dickson Nwakaeme late in the match ensure Pahang won their second trophy in as many years. Pahang won the Malaysia Cup last year.
Pahang trailed Felda United 1-0 at the break in what was an evenly contested half at the Shah Alam Stadium.
However, despite the balance, Pahang’s midfield look unsettled as Hafiz Kamal and Azidan Sarudin could not stamped authority in the engine room. This was partly due to Felda’s three-man midfield comprising holding midfielder and skipper Shukor Adan, Zah Rahan Krangar and Indra Putra Mahayuddin pressured the Elephants each time they got the ball.
Felda did not waste time to put Pahang on the back foot with two corners in the opening minute. The creative Krangar forced Khairul Azhan Khalid into a point blank save ten minutes later.
Edward Junior Wilson’s one two with Indra Putra set himself for a sitter in the 22nd minute and despite Khairul getting a touch to the ball to deflect the shot, a back-tracking Razman Roslan could not prevent it from going into the goal.
Pahang finally settled in after the half-hour mark and Matias Conti was unlucky to see his header sail inches wide with Felda custodian Farizal Harun rooted to the spot in the 30th minute. Azidan Sarudin saw his header rattled the crossbar in the 37th minute.
Pahang looked more promising in the second half but found it hard to break Felda’s resilience.
Yet, Felda almost doubled their lead just four minutes into the break but thankfully for Zainal Abidin Hassan’s side Krangar’s shot hit the post.
Conti almost scored the goal of the season in the 52nd minute after chesting Saiful Nizam Miswan’s cross before taking the shot on the volley, all with his back facing the goal, but Farizal manage to tipped the ball for a corner despite being off his line.
Conti was taken off for Zesh Rehman in the the 79th minute as Zainal shuffled his line-up, leaving the Pakistan captain in the holding role to add numbers in the middle.
Subsitute Faizol Hussin, who put Pahang in the final with a stunning goal against Johor Darul Takzim in the semifinal second leg, did just the same again with another cracker from the edge of the box in the 79th minute.
PAHANG XI: Khairul Azhan Khalid (GK), Saiful Nizam Miswan, Damion Stewart, Azidan Sarudin, Matias Conti, Dickson Nwakaeme, Azamuddin Akil, Razman Roslan (C), Shahrizan Salleh, Hafiz Kamal, R. Gopinathan.
SUBS: Jalaludin Jaafar, Zesh Rehman, R. Surendran, Faizol Hussin, Zaiza Zainal Abidin, Fauzi Roslan, Nasril Nourdin (GK)
FELDA UNITED XI: Yaroslav Krushelnitskiy, Khairul Ismail, Zah Rahan Krangar, Ahmad Syamim Yahya, Shukor Adan (C), Raimi Mohd Noor, Aizulridzwan Razali, Edward Junior Wilson, Indra Putra Mahayuddin, Haznizaidi Jamian, Farizal Harun (GK)
Fairul Azwan Shahrullai (GK), Adib Aizuddin Latiff, Nasriq Baharom, Shahrulnizam Mustapa, Syahid Zaidon, Haris Safwan Kamal, Makache Ndumba.
Referee: Shamsudin Ibrahim