LionsXII midfielder Zulfahmi Arifin has admitted that he was still in disbelief after scoring a stunning goal in the 2-1 victory over ATM FA on Saturday evening.
Originally in doubt for this game due to a groin injury, Zulfahmi admitted that the precious second goal was wholly unexpected.
“I haven’t been scoring many goals, and my previous two goals came through set-pieces," he told FourFourTwo after the match.
"This time round, it was actually through open play.”
Despite that, there seemed to be little time for second thoughts as teammate Khairul Amri set him up with a perfect through ball in the 20th minute.
“All I wanted to do was shoot," he said.
"Managed to run down the line, cut back and take the shot.
“I was afraid I might misplace a pass if I chose that option, and since I was already inside the penalty box, the first thing that came to my mind was to shoot.”
That goal was Zulfahmi’s second in two games, having scored a wonderful free kick in the previous game against Johor Darul Tak’zim as well.
What made it more impressive was the fact that the left-footer was playing through the pain barrier.
“I have groin inflammation on both sides,” Zulfahmi said while pointing at the exact location below his stomach.
“I tested out during warm-up and I could see from Abang’s (Malay for elder brother, referring to head coach Fandi Ahmad) eyes that he really wanted me to play.
“In warm-up I could feel the pain when I attempted long passes which required me to stretch a bit, but concentrating and focusing during the game helped me to forget all about the it.”
With a two week break in the Malaysian Super League schedule coming up, Zulfahmi indicated that he would be taking advantage of the enforced rest to heal up.
“Now there’s quite a long break, they have been asking me whether I needed any rest," he said.
"For this break I will be able to rest it and I think that would be sufficient enough.”comments