KUALA LUMPUR: Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) downed Kedah 5-0 but Felda United stayed on hot on the heels of the Super League champions with a 2-1 win over Perak on Saturday.
Safiq Rahim scored twice in the first half with Jorge Pereyra Diaz also claiming two late goals as Darul Ta’zim registered their 10th league win to move on to 33 points.
Felda remained two points behind while Selangor overcame a half-time deficit to stay third, another six points adrift, by beating Police 2-1 in Shah Alam. Fresh from announcing his retirement from international football, former national captain Safiq showed what Malaysia will be missing as he took his tally for the season to 13 goals.
Restored to the starting line up despite making a fatal mistake when appearing as substitute against PKNS in the Malaysia Cuplast week, Safiq repaid coach Mario Gomez’s faith in him by heading in for the lead in the 27th minute.
He doubled Darul Ta’zim’s advantage four minutes before half-time with a simple tap in to the delight of the Larkin crowd. Marcos Antonio Santos made it 3-0 midway through the second half before Diaz late strikers completed the win for the home side.
Felda were in command on their battle with relegation-threatened Perak in Jengka from the start as Lutfulla Turaev opened the scoring in the 24th minutes from Firdaus Faudzi’s pass.
A brilliant individual effort by Zah Rahan Krangar four minutes later made it 2-0 when he made his way past three defenders before firing into the bottom corner of the Perak net.
Fazrul Hazli Kadri netted a consolation for Perak four minutes from time. Ugo Ukah scored a late winner for Selangor after the Malaysia Cup title holders fell behind when Guilherme de Paula headed in Police’s opening goal against his former club in the 28th minute.
Selangor fought back after the break when they drew level seven minutes into the second half through Ahmad Hazwan Bakri’s volley before Nigerian defender Ukah tapped in from a corner kick in the 90th minute. Pablo Vranjican scored twice either side of half-time to lift Pahang out of the relegation zone in a 2-0 win over Sarawak in Kuantan.
Penang stayed bottom despite new signings Ranti Martins and Jeong Seok-min each scoring twice in a 4-3 away win over Kuala Terengganu T-Team, for whom Patrick Dos Santos Cruz struck a hat-trick. Perak’s defeat saw them drop into the relegation places, just a point ahead of Penang.
Malacca returned to the top of the Premier League standings thanks to Ilija Spasojevic’s two goals in a 2-1 win over Kuala Lumpur in Selayang. Spasojevic took his league tally to 15 goals as Malacca displaced Johor from to move two points clear after a comfortable win despite the city side pulling one back through Leonardo Moreira in the 79th minute.