AFC Cup: Johor pins heavy loss on Global FC
JOHOR BAHRU, Malaysia – Global FC lost its perfect record in the 2017 AFC Cup, after suffering a 0-4 away defeat to Johor Dairul Ta’zim last Tuesday night at Larkin Stadium here.
In the battle between champions of the Philippines and Malaysia, it was Global that was left searching for answers after getting punished for its lethargic first half performance by an in-form JDT side.
Mahalli Jasuli and Safiq Rahim struck in the first half, before substitute Brian Ferreira and Marcos Antonio completed the rout with late goals for Johor, the 2015 AFC Cup champion, which has seven points at the end of the first round of the group stage.
Despite the defeat, Global remained in second, just a point behind, but the huge losing margin could come back to haunt the Filipino champions especially if the race for top spot comes down to goal difference.
On the back of victories against Magwe of Burma and Boeung Ket Angkor of Cambodia, Global was looking to pull away from JDT in the race for top spot.
But JDT took the game to Global right from the opening whistle. The Filipinos struggled to cope with the Malaysians quick passing and movement in the final third and were lucky not to fall behind to a Ahmad Bakri strike early in the match.
Twice, Patrick Deyto had to be alert to keep out the JDT striker’s efforts early on.
But the Global goalkeeper could do little to stop Jasulli from giving the home side the lead in the 30th minute with the Malaysian international firing a shot that cannoned off the post and crossed the line.
The second goal came in controversial fashion two minutes later. Bakri went down in the box and despite little contact from Amani Aguinaldo, Korean referee Kim Daeyong pointed to the spot.
Safiq converted the penalty, sending Deyto the wrong way.
Unable to squeeze the best out of foreign players Kemi Agustien and Daryl Roberts, the Filipino side found it difficult to create chances against a JDT side that played with a spring in its step.
Global showed signs of life in the second half with Shu Sasaki and OJ Clarino coming close to cutting the deficit, before Ferreira’s quality finish and Antonio’s well-placed header capped a frustrating night for the Filipinos.
Global seeks payback against JDT when the two sides meet again in the reverse fixture on April 3 at Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.