Johor Darul Ta’Zim has reached to final after beating Selangor FC with a score of 4-0 in the Piala FA Malaysia 2023 Semi-Final at Sultan Ibrahim Stadium, Iskandar Puteri.
In this high-intensity battle, the team controlled by Tan Chen Hoe was like being ‘eaten’ by JDT’s psychological war when it was forced to work hard to curb the barrage of attacks by the Southern Tiger squad.
Continuing the initial attempt in the seventh minute, Leandro Velazquez missed the opportunity presented when he failed to spread the ball straight to the goal even though he was in the penalty box after receiving Fernando Forestieri’s bait ball.
Even though Selangor was often tackled, the opportunity obtained in the 18th minute almost trapped JDT goalkeeper, Syihan Hazmi, who was forced to ward off the ball from Aryon Del Valle’s slanted shot.
JDT counter-attack in the 20th minute paid off after Forestieri’s bait ball opened space for Arif Aiman Hanapi who managed to get past Quentin Cheng’s guard before swiping the ball right into the right corner of the goal killing Khairul Azhan Khalid.
It turned out that Arif Aiman was in a class of his own after scoring his second personal goal in the 33rd minute stemming from Velazquez’s cross ball when the up-and-coming youngster solo beat three Selangor FC defenders before slapping a tight ball right into the right corner.
Arif Aiman once again failed to be restrained when a hat-trick in the 38th minute stemmed from a Forestieri movement ball with Zikri Khalili and had the chance to flip the ball over to kill Khairulazhan Khalid.
Continuing the second half, JDT did not wait long to eliminate the remaining struggles of Cheng Hoe’s students when Forestieri wisely infiltrated into the penalty box to score the fourth goal even though he was tackled by a substitute, Khuzaimie Piee in the 47th minute.
Selangor FC missed the chance to score at least one goal in the 67th minute when the ball from substitute Brendan Gan opened space for Faisal Halim who had confused Jordi Amat and Shane Lowry but Syihan Hazmi was willing to tame the ball to avoid being scored.
After that attack, the hosts appeared to have relaxed their attack and a 4-0 in favor of Esteban Solari’s side was enough to cheer up the more than 32,000 fans who were in attendance to see JDT into the final for the second season in a row.
Credit Photo : Jayden Seah/SNE-Photo