Terengganu FC’s Kipre Tchetche scores the third goal against Melaka United at Stadium Hang Jebat in Melaka October 7, 2022. – Bernama pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 8 – Import striker Kipre Tchetche’s hat-trick helped Terengganu FC (TFC) defeat Melaka United 4-2 last night, and the Turtles now have a bright chance of finishing in the top three of the Super League with two games to go.
In the clash at the Hang Jebat Stadium in Melaka, TFC looked confident as they took a commanding 3-1 lead in the first half through Tchetche’s hat-trick.
The striker from the Ivory Coast ‘silenced’ the home fans when he scored two early goals in the third and 13th minutes, followed by his third in the 36th minute before Melaka United won a penalty kick which was converted by Faris Shah Rosli in the 44th minute.
The home side started brilliantly in the second half and managed to further reduce the goal deficit thanks to Muhammad Syahmi Shamsudin’s finish in the 52nd minute, but TFC held on before national player Faisal Abdul Halim scored the team’s fourth goal in the 70th minute.
After 20 games, TFC remain third in the league with 38 points, one point behind Sabah FC in second, while Negri Sembilan FC are in third with 35 points, but with a game in hand.
TFC, Sabah and Negri Sembilan are currently competing for two slots in the 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup which will be given to the teams that finish second and third in the league this season.
Meanwhile, an excellent performance in the second half at the Likas Stadium in Kota Kinabalu saw Sabah FC bounce back from two consecutive defeats to beat the league’s bottom club Penang FC, 4-1.
In the first half, the home team coached by Datuk Ong Kim Swee faced stiff competition from Penang, but eventually took a 1-0 lead through former national player Baddrol Bakhtiar in the 33rd minute.
Penang equalised through Adib Abdul Ra’op in the 70th minute but Sabah quickly regained the lead two minutes later thanks to Park Tae-su’s touch before Saddil Ramdani made it 3-1 after converting a penalty kick in the 80th minute.
Stuart Wilkin also got onto the scoresheet in the 89th minute to complete the team’s 4-1 rout.
Selangor FC recorded their second consecutive win under the guidance of former national squad head coach Tan Cheng Hoe, after overcoming Petaling Jaya (PJ) City FC 1-0 at the Petaling Jaya City Council Stadium.
Young striker Ahmad Danial Ahmad Asri emerged the hero for the Red Giants squad as his goal in the 81st minute gave the team three valuable points and avenged the 0-1 league defeat to PJ City in August.
Meanwhile, the game between Negri Sembilan FC and Kedah Darul Aman (KDA) FC at the Tuanku Abdul Rahman Stadium in Paroi was postponed to tomorrow due to bad weather.
Meanwhile, league champions Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) maintained their unbeaten record after a goalless draw against Sri Pahang FC in a match that was delayed for about one hour and a half hours due to heavy rain at the Darul Makmur Stadium in Kuantan. – Bernama