Malaysia Cup 2015 Group B: Speedy hares, top-notch fans and midfield mediocrity

With the Malaysian league season over, it's now time for 16 select teams to battle for Malaysia Cup supremacy. Ooi Kin Fai previews all four groups in this opening stage...

Johor Darul Ta’zim

What happened in the league?
Johor Darul Ta’zim did "expand their prowess" by retaining the Malaysia Super League title this year. Locked in an almighty battle with Pahang, the Southern Tigers triumphed having drawn one match less than their rivals. Mario Gomez lifted the title at his first attempt despite two defeats in his final three matches, something which made the run-in much closer than it should have been.

Did anything go wrong?
The ding-dong transfer saga involving Jorge Pereyra Diaz left many fans scratching their heads. The Argentine was superb last season but his on-again, off-again move didn’t help the team. That said, it’s awesome to be able to use the phrase "on loan to Argentina’s Independiente from Malaysia’s JDT".

JDT's last match against Perak was one to remember, as they leapfrogged Pahang to the top of the table

What went right?
The return of Gary Steven Robbat and Aidil Zafuan added much needed steel to JDT's miserly defence. Only 18 goals were conceded by the end of the season, by far the best defensive record in the league.

Player to watch
Hands down, Luciano Figueroa. A lethal combination of predatory instincts, desire, attitude and work-rate make the forward worth the ticket price alone. Given his stature, he could have just sauntered around, but that’s not how the Argentine operates. He's should be every budding strikers’ dream role model.

Prediction
The hare in the "tortoise vs the hare" race, except this bunny won’t be caught. Group winners.

Pages