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Full UCL Results: Barca thrash Juventus, PSG run riot at Celtic Park

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What an incredible night of football!

28 goals were scored across eight matches tonight as the UEFA Champions League kicked off in tremendous fashion. Barcelona produced a masterclass performance to outshine Juventus at the Camp Nou, while Neymar and Kylian Mbappe turned on the style to help PSG clinch a momentous 5-0 win over Celtic. Man United and Chelsea both got their campaigns off to a winning start too, alongside Bayern Munich, who were comfortable 3-0 victors over Anderlecht.

Here’s a complete breakdown of all the results from tonight’s UCL action!

GROUP A

Benfica 1-2 CSKA Moscow
(50′ Seferovic, 63′ Vitinho, 71′ Zhamaletdinov)

Manchester United 3-0 FC Basel
(35′ Fellaini, 53′ Lukaku, 84′ Rashford)

 

GROUP B

Bayern Munich 3-0 Anderlect
(12′ Lewandowski, 65′ Thiago, 90′ Kimmich)

Celtic 0-5 Paris Saint Germain
(19′ Neymar, 34′ Mbappe, 40′ 85′ Cavani, 83′ Lustig OG)

 

GROUP C

Chelsea 6-0 Qarabag FK
(5′ Pedro, 30′ Zappacosta, 55′ Azpilicueta, 71′ Bakayoko, 76′ Batshuayi, 82′ Medvedev OG)

AS Roma 0-0 Atletico Madrid

 

GROUP D

Barcelona 3-0 Juventus
(45′ Messi, 56′ Rakitic, 69′ Messi)

Olympiacos 2-3 Sporting CP
(2′ Doumbia, 13′ Gelson, 43′ Fernandes, 89′ 90′ Felipe Pardo)

Football

#ACQ2019: Dramatic scenes in Malacca as 9-man Malaysia hold Hong Kong to 1-1 draw

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Hafizul Hakim’s late heroics helped Malaysia hold Hong Kong to a 1-1 draw at the Hang Jebat Stadium, despite finishing the match with 9 men on the pitch.

Nelo Vingada fielded a rather attacking-minded line-up, with Darren Lok spearheading the offensive department. But it took 10 minutes for Malaysia to create the first chance of the match Darren Lok picked up a loose ball, and attempted a shot from distance, though it failed to trouble Hong Kong’s Yapp Hung Fai.

Five minutes later, Hong Kong could have had the lead, had it not been for Aidil Zafuan’s perfectly timed tackle on Alexander Oluwatayo, who only had Hafizul Hakim to beat. But to a large extent, it was Malaysia who had more movement in attack, as they attempted to unsettle the Hong Kong defence.

Safiq Rahim’s free-kick missed the target on the 23rd minute, before Alessandro Leonardo shot straight at Hafizul, after being played through brilliantly by Chan Siu Ki. On the 35th minute, Darren Lok evaded Jean Kilama on the left-flank and fired an attempt on goal, but Yapp was alert enough to parry it away to safety.

 

Only a minute later, Rizal Ghazali’s long cutback almost found Amirulhadi Zainal but Baise Festus did enough to unsettle the JDT midfielder and forced him to shoot over the bar.

Hong Kong then had two great chances within a minute. Hafizul had to dive to save Lam Ka Wai’s free-kick and he was in the right position to catch Kilama’s header from the resulting corner, as the match went into half-time.

Five minutes after the restart, Syazwan was able to launch a beautiful low cross, though Baddrol failed to get to the end of it when he slid in. Hong Kong issued an instant response by pulling off a doube save. First, he tipped Leonardo’s shot away, before catching Jaimes McKee’s rebound attempt comfortably.

Two minutes later, Hong Kong broke the deadlock via a counter attack. McKee did brilliantly to cut the ball back to Leonardo, who made no mistakes by firing home to make it 1-0.

It didn’t take long for Malaysia to equalize though. Six minutes later, Yapp failed to keep hold of Safiq’s powerful shot from just outside the box and Syazwan Zainon was on hand to bury the rebound.

On the 60th minute mark, Hong Kong spurned a glorious chance to retake the lead, as a miscommunication between Oluwatayo and Leonardo caused the former to miskick McKee’s low cross from the left.

The match tempo slowed down towards the 80th minute, though it burst into life in the final few minutes, albeit for the wrong reasons. Rizal Ghazali was sent off for a second bookable offence, after entering the pitch without consent from the referee. Deep into injury time, Aidil Zafuan was sent off after bringing Oluwatayo down inside the box. But thankfully for Malaysia, Hafizul Hakim produced a stunning save to deny Leonardo and keep the score 1-1.

As soon as the final whistle was blown, Nelo Vingada and several Malaysian players stormed onto the pitch to confront the referee. But security officers raced into the pitch and managed to surround the referee and his two assistants, before escorting them them out in front of a visibly frustrated home crowd.

More to come…

Football

Ultras Malaya to boycott SEA Games final between Malaysia and Thailand?

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Ultras Malaya have confirmed that they won’t be opening the ‘Curva’ area of the Shah Alam Stadium when Malaysia take to the field to face Thailand in the SEA Games football final on Tuesday night.

“We will officially abstain from opening the ‘Curva’ for tomorrow’s final match as a mark of solidarity for our comrades as well as other fans who went through a lot just to get tickets, but were unable to do so due to an inefficient ticketing system,” Ultras Malaya said, via a statement that was published on their Facebook page.

“To the Malaysia U-23 players, keep the momentum going and our passion will be with every single one of you tomorrow. Come on Malaysia!,” the statement added.

Their decision to ‘boycott’ the game comes in the aftermath of the Malaysian Organising Committee’s (MASOC) decision to abandon the online ticketing system, which was implemented for all four group stage matches, as well as Malaysia’s semi-final clash against Indonesia. Instead, fans were forced to queue and purchase tickets at the Shah Alam Stadium, earlier today.

Midway through the day, a mini riot erupted at the venue, after a ticket counter was abruptly closed, merely a couple of hours after it opened. Barriers were broken down and punches were thrown, until police officers arrived to calm the situation down.

Ticket sales were then temporarily suspended, before it resumed later in the afternoon with each individual being limited to two tickets per transaction. Here’s an account of what transpired today, from one of our writers.

Kisah perit jerih penyokong yang mahu membeli tiket perlawanan akhir Sukan SEA

 

Football

How Indonesia contributed to the revival of Malaysian football

GANYANG

If you think about it, football is pretty peculiar.

Getting thousands of people together, rallying for a cause, uniting behind a badge, to cheer on 22 men chasing after and kicking a ball. But in so many ways, that’s where the novelty of football lies in, isn’t it? Of course, there’s a special ooze of satisfaction that you’re able to acquire at the sight of Leo Messi dazzling past defenders or Andrea Pirlo converting a panenka spot-kick.

But a large chunk of this global obsession for football is premised upon a collective experience that transcends borders, cultures and even traditions. In a world that’s increasingly borderless, football is one of the few things that allows people to pick sides. It allows people to be in one corner, compare, contrast and even revel alongside a heightened sense of belonging.

Photo Credit: Astro Awani

In a sense, it’s precisely the element that has helped Malaysian football revive itself over the last 7-8 years or so. All the trust that vanquished in the aftermatch of the major match-fixing scandal in the mid 90s wasn’t exactly repaired or revived by outstanding quality of football. A fresh wave of nationalism, fueled by the rise of social networking sites, did the trick.

2009-2011 was a glorious period for Malaysia. An impeccable AFF Suzuki Cup triumph in 2010, sandwiched in between two SEA Games victories in 2009 and 2011. It wouldn’t be an overstatement to suggest that interest in local football experienced positive growth in that period, with Indonesia being at the forefront of it all.

The history is unquestionable. The hostile relationship has been that wayfor ages. From territorial disputes to arguments over cultural ownership to something as basic as footballing rivalry – we’ve seen it all. In so many ways, the similarities between both nations are the very things that drive them apart. It’s a classic love-hate relationship.

Photo Credit: Ariff Tajuddin (Flickr)

2010 really kicked things off. Malaysia lost 5-1 to Indonesia in the first leg, before bouncing back in tremendous fashion to ultimately meet their arch rivals in the final. The first leg blew the things apart. Led by Safee Sali, the Tigers romped to a scintillating 3-0 win in front of a jam-packed crowd at the Bukit Jalil Stadium. The second leg was equally explosive in terms of atmosphere, though Malaysia did clinch victory on aggregate, despite losing 2-1 on the night. It was a game changer, according to our resident writer, Gowri Krishnan, who was in Indonesia back in 2010.

“I was in Yogjakarta at that point, for a student exchange program. And after that night, everyone in Indonesia was talking about it. There was a unique shock value to the tie. We had lost the first game by a big score line, and it wasn’t just a regular comeback. We bounced back and thrashed them too,” she said.

One year later, the rivalry grew exponentially bigger. This time around, Malaysia’s U23 team marched into the final of the 2011 SEA Games, where Indonesia were awaiting them. The Young Tigers had to be transported to the iconic Gelora Bung Karno Stadium alongside military escort vehicles – the level of tension was that severe. 100,000 people packed into the stadium and the Negaraku was predictably drowned out by an incredibly boisterous atmosphere.

Photo Credit: SPORTMania

But it was also the night that transformed Ong Kim Swee into a Malaysian cult hero. Minutes before his players took to the field, he delivered a compelling speech in the dressing room. “They don’t respect you, they don’t respect our flag, they don’t respect our King and they don’t respect your parents. If you allow this to happen, then you are cowards. You must teach them what being Malaysian is all about,” he said. The Young Tigers went out, kept their composure, and won the battle in dramatic fashion.

The timing was impeccable. At a time where Southeast Asia, with a collective population of almost 593 million people, was experiencing the iconic social media boom, Malaysia’s rivalry with Indonesia was completely digitalized. Twitter and Facebook became the number one platform for banter exchange, though the veil of anonymity eventually transformed banter into explosive verbal abuses. At that point, it was alarming. But in retrospect, it completely changed the face of Malaysian football.

“Social media really brought the rivalry to centre stage. Fans now had direct platforms to engage with each other and that’s exactly what they did. Even people who were not into local football got involved in heated banters. For weeks, Twitter and Facebook was just filled with Indonesians and Malaysians getting into petty arguments,” Khairul Nizam, who is a social media consultant, said.

“Internet users were moving from forums to social networking sites at that point and the game happened in the middle of it. People started venting on Facebook pages and its comment sections. Lengthy essays were written there. Short abuses were hurled. It was quite a sight. But if anything, it got more people in Malaysia to take closer look at local football and identify things about it that were good,” he added.

Ask local fans about Malaysia’s SEA Games squad from 2009 and they’ll struggle to pick out a name. But in 2010, fans had Safee Sali. In 2011, fans had Nazmi Faiz. The by-product of Malaysia’s digital rivalry with Indonesia was a refreshing form of nationalism that had younger generations idolizing local footballers. “In the aftermath of our Suzuki Cup win, I spent some time visiting several academies and observing several youth training sessions. And when I asked these small kids about their footballing dreams, they said: ‘I want to be the next Safiq Rahim! I want to be the next Safee Sali! I want to be the next Mat Yo!’. You know how difficult it is to get the modern generation to idolize local footballers,” Datuk K. Rajagobal said, when we interviewed him recently.

In the years after that, stadium attendances for Malaysia Super League matches improved and fans no longer depended on limited coverage of local football on local dailies. The internet became their primary source of team news, match updates and even transfer rumours. Politicians started taking a closer look at local football – which is always a decent metric, given how they’re always on the lookout for avenues to boost political mileage. The increased attention also meant there was a lot more at stake for teams. Wages began sky-rocketing past unseen levels.

Photo Credit: Twitter

Over the years, this new generation of Malaysian fans have also incorporated social activism into their agenda. Some campaign for footballing reforms, some encourage the act of staying back after football games to clean the stadium, some organize charity events on behalf of fan clubs. The amazing thing about it? Every single aspect of this momentum was garnered, gathered and constructed via social media, over the last five to seven years. As the enigmatic Khal (@PadangBolaSepak) summed it up during a conversation recently: “I wouldn’t be here, tweeting about Malaysian football and progressive values, if it wasn’t for K. Rajagobal and our 2010 Suzuki Cup win over Indonesia.”

Social media is the best thing to have happened to Malaysian football in the last decade. And social media will be controlling the narrative of this rivalry when the Young Tigers face the Young Garudas at the Shah Alam Stadium tomorrow. But given that the digital revolution of our football culture is due in no small to the archetypal rivalry we share with Indonesia – maybe we should try to cherish, appreciate and respect it, with zero-tolerance for violence.

Football

Malaysia vs Indonesia : 3 perkara yang perlu dilakukan penyokong Harimau Malaya

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Malaysia vs Indonesia.

Perlawanan bolasepak di antara dua negara ini tidak pernah lekang dengan kontroversi.

Pastinya ramai yang ingat apabila pemain Malaysia perlu pulang dengan menaiki Barracuda ketika memenangi pingat emas Sukan SEA 2011 dengan menewaskan Indonesia yang menjadi tuan rumah.

Kini giliran Malaysia pula menjadi tuan rumah, dan kita akan bertemu musuh ketat kita di gelanggang sendiri.

Dengan pelbagai isu yang timbul, terutamanya berkenaan bendera terbalik di buku cenderamata ketika upacara perasmian Sukan SEA pada hari Sabtu yang lalu, pastinya Indonesia mahu menewaskan Malaysia dengan apa cara sekalipun.

Stadium Shah Alam bakal menjadi gelanggang pertempuran di antara Malaysia dan Indonesia. Stadium yang mampu memuatkan lebih kurang 80,000 orang itu akan dipenuhi penyokong Malaysia dan juga Indonesia.

Apa yang kita sebagai penyokong Malaysia boleh lakukan?

Pertama, kita wajib memenuhi Stadium Shah Alam dan memberikan sokongan padu kepada pemain-pemain Malaysia. Tunjukkan bahawa ini rumah kita dan jangan sekali suara kita tenggelam di sebalik sorakan penyokong lawan.

Berikan sokongan padu dan sentiasa berada di belakang pemain sebagai pemain ke-12. Photo credit: Facebook FAM

Berikan sokongan padu dan jangan pernah berhenti bersorak kepada pemain-pemain kita. Di saat ini, mereka benar-benar memerlukan kita. Jadilah pemain ke-12 yang mampu menaikkan semangat anak-anak muda yang berjuang untuk Malaysia ini.

Kedua, jangan dilayan provokasi dan jangan memulakan provokasi. Selepas pelbagai kecaman dan tuduhan yang kita terima, tunjukkan bahawa kita rakyat yang bertamadun. Rakyat Malaysia terkenal dengan adab dan sopan santun, inilah masanya untuk kita tunjukkan.

Jangan dilayan dan jangan mulakan provokasi. Semoga tiada insiden penyokong pihak lawan dipukul pada hari Sabtu ini. Photo credit: My news hub

Perlawanan menentang Indonesia tidak pernah tidak ‘panas’. Tunjukkan adab dan budi bahasa kita sebagai tuan rumah. Menang, kalah adat permainan. Semoga tiada insiden seperti perlawanan menentang Myanmar tempoh hari.

Ketiga, jangan buang sampah merata-rata. Ini penting sebenarnya. Anda makan, anda buanglah sampah itu. Walaupun sebelum ini viral mengenai beberapa penyokong yang secara sukarela mengutip sampah di stadium, kan lebih baik jika anda sendiri yang membuang sampah anda ke tong sampah.

Walaupun mereka sukarela mengutip sampah, jangan anda jadikan alasan untuk membuang sampah merata-rata. Photo credit: NST Online

Jika ada yang makan kuaci, buanglah di dalam tong sampah. Yang mahu merokok, tunggulah rehat separuh masa dan keluar sebentar untuk menghisap rokok.

Jadi itulah tiga perkara yang anda perlu lakukan untuk perlawanan hari Sabtu ini. Sarungkan jersi Malaysia dan mafla anda. Turun ke stadium. Sorak sepenuh hati. Kerana Sabtu ini, Harimau Malaya perlukan kita.

News

“If you’re a man…” – Sultan of Johor has issued a challenge to Khairy Jamaluddin

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Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar has challenged Khairy Jamaluddin as well as Malaysia’s SEA Games Polo squad to drop by Johor and prove their mettle by defeating the state’s official Polo team.

“I’d like to extend the invitation to the the Youth and Sports Minister and hopefully he won’t disappoint the requests of the people to see your team defeat the Johor team,” Sultan Ibrahim said, via a statement that was released on JOHOR Southern Tigers’ Facebook page.

“I will send two of my sons and two of our horse trainers or perhaps myself, as I believe I still have what it takes. Should my team lose, I will admit that the SEA Games team are represented by the best there is,” His Royal Highness added.

This comes in the aftermath of Malaysia’s second polo victory at the ongoing SEA Games. Khairy Jamaluddin and Co kicked off their campaign by beating Brunei 12-4. They followed it up by beating Singapore 13-2 earlier today, with Khairy featuring in it as well.

However, the Johor ruler claims Khairy’s role within the polo team is purely tokenistic and that the whole scenario is nothing but a PR stunt.

“Today they played against Singapore. When the team was already winning, he came on and asked the performing player to pretend to be injured. So there’s a photo of him in the team to be featured in the print media and spread the propaganda to cheat people as if he was victorious and reliable.

“Polo in Johor did not start yesterday. Polo was first played and introduced in Johor since 1884. When I was the Crown Prince, I was already playing around the world and even played in the World Cup. Hence, the SEA Games is almost insignificant in comparison. If you want a more competitive match, do come to Johor,” His Royal Highness concluded.

MMA

Champ Ben Askren set to defend his Welterweight belt against underdog Zebaztian Kadestam

Undefeated ONE World Champion Ben Askren will be defending his Welterweight title against Swedish sensation, Zebaztian Kadestam.

The fight will be the main event of ONE Championship: Shanghai — which will take place at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center in Shanghai on the 2nd of September.

If the name Ben Askren sounds awfully familiar, it’s because he defeated Malaysia’s Agilan Thani back in May. Agilan tapped out after 2 minutes and 22 seconds, submitting to Askren’s arm-triangle choke.

That victory marked Askren’s third first-round finish in five bouts since signing with ONE.

Photo: IB Times

Zebaztian Kadestam, who has had nine career wins, which consists of a whopping seven knockouts, is looking forward to relish his underdog role against Askren and possibly stun the world with a victory.

“It’s good to be an underdog because it boosts my motivation to win. When you’re an underdog, others believe that you have a small chance to win. But in some instances, some competitors use it as an extra drive in their fights,” Kadestam said.

Kadestam won his last cage outing in May when he defeated top welterweight contender Luis “Sapo” Santos of Brazil by way of third-round knockout.

“I am going to give everything to capture the belt,” Kadestam added.

The 26-year-old boy from Stockholm is perfectly aware of the challenge that lies ahead, Askren is widely regarded as one of the best welterweights in the world today with a perfect record of 16-0.

Photo: Fight Madness

“I am no pushover. I am not someone’s footstool. On September 2nd, I will once again shock the world. Ben Askren is only a man, and he is beatable. The belt will soon be mine.” Kadestam said utmost conviction.

Other bouts leading up to the ONE Championship: Shanghai’s main event are:

1) Narantungalag Jadambaa vs Tetsuya Yamada

2) Miao Li Tao vs Liu De Li

3) Xu Chun Yan vs Eh Ya Nut

4) Chen Geng Min vs Peng Xue Wen

5) Sagetdao Petpayathai vs Mahmoud Mohamed

6) Miao Jie vs Mona Samir

7) Amir Khan vs Jaroslav Jartim

8)Zhang Ze Hao vs Li Cheng Chao

9) Marc Marcellinus vs Tran Quang Loc

Athletics

Khairul Hafiz Jantan bags gold to become the fastest man in Southeast Asia

Khairul Hafiz Jantan is officially the fastest man in Southeast Asia!

Khairul Hafiz clocked 10.38s at the men’s 100m event at the 2017 Kuala Lumpur SEA Games to clinch gold for Malaysia.

Despite stiff competition from Philippines’ Eric Shawn Cray, the 19-year-old darted was the first to touch the finishing line — sending the Malaysian crowd into an uproar.

Eric Shawn Cray clinched silver after clocking 10.43s. Third place went to Thailand’s Kritisada Namsuwun who also recorded 10.43s at the finish line.

Meanwhile, Zaidatul Husniah Zulkifli bagged silver after coming in second at 11.74s in the women’s 100m event.

Vietnam’s Le Tu Chinh came in first at 11.56s, while Singapore’s Veronica Shanti clinched the bronze medal after clocking 11.76s, close behind Zaidatul.

Badminton

“It’s over” – Chong Wei sent packing in first round of World Championships

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The unexpected has happened.

Lee Chong Wei has been sent packing in Round 1 of the World Championship after losing to France’s Brice Leverdez in a tightly contested three-set battle at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow.

Leverdez sprung a surprise from the get go and clinched the first set 21-19, though Chong Wei pushed hard and ultimately bounced back to secure a 24-22 win in the second set.

However, the French shuttler showed no signs of slowing down in the rubber set, as he outclassed Chong Wei 21-17 to pull off the impeccable feat of ending Chong Wei’s World Championship aspirations in Round One.

This comes as a major setback for Chong Wei, who was looking to finally win the World Championship in his 10th attempt.

While Chong Wei refused to publicly confirm that this would be his final appearance at the World Championships, there’s no doubt that this particular setback will force him to reconsider the idea of pushing himself again in 2019.

Football

“PSG rugi beli Neymar” – Best tweets on Thanabalan’s two-goal show vs Myanmar

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Every fan craves a footballing hero. Last night, that hero was undoubtedly N. Thanabalan.

Less than a week after helping Malaysia seal a comeback win against Singapore, Thanabalan turned on the style all over again, scoring two goals to inspire Datuk Ong Kim Swee’s men to a resounding 3-1 victory over Myanmar last night.

It was unprecedented, it was unexpected. But more importantly, it was absolutely brilliant. Given that Myanmar has scored 11 goals in their first three games of KL 2017, they were clear favourites heading into the tie. But buoyed by a boisterous home crowd, Malaysia were relentless from the get go.

The entire team worked their socks off for 90 minutes, but Thanabalan’s performance was particularly eye-catching. He showed excellent poacher’s instincts to bag the first goal. But the second one was purely down to determination and drive. The cross from Jafri was outstanding. But it was Thanabalan’s sheer pace and desire that allowed him to make contact with the cross and unleash a bullet header that left Myanmar’s goalkeeper absolutely helpless.

Very little was said about Thanabalan, prior to the tournament. But the Negeri Sembilan-born striker, who is currently on-loan at Felcra FC, has officially put himself on the map, as evidently seen on Twitter last night.

Here’s a compilation of some of the best tweets on Thanabalan’s performance last night.

1) Arsene Wenger in 2035: “We almost signed Thanabalan a few years back”

2) Remember Inzaghi?

3) Wait…. For….. It

4) The complete forward?

5) Ballon d’Or Balan?

6) This. Is. The. Best

7) Still a long way to go with the pun game, son. Still a long way

8) When you realize Thanabalan has scored more goals than Harry Kane in August….

9) The ‘claim game’ has officially kicked off

10) We have nothing to add….. #Hambar

11) *Hint Hint*

12) Why spend 222 million on Neymar when you can sign Thanabalan?

13) Not an easy day to be a Negeri Sembilan fan….

14) Juventus Darul Torino, wow. 

15) When you put on a two-goal show, this is bound to happen!