Kelantan 1-3 LionsXII: Five moments the Cup was won
On a night when history was made, there were plenty of heroes in blue. Captain Izwan Mahbud was majestic in goal, as strikes from Faris Ramli and Sahil Suhaimi meant the FA Cup would be crossing the Causeway for the first time ever. The Red Warriors would have been contemplating what could have been, especially since the lions' share of chances fell their way but the Singaporeans would not have minded as they duly took advantage.
They say the first goal is vital. Faris Ramli took all the early pressure off the LionsXII team by drawing first blood. Nik Shahrul was caught dozing, a fatal error when you're marking the fleet-footed Faris.
In came Izzdin's perfectly weighted pass over the top and the LionsXII winger was off to the races, beating his stumbling marker for pace before shooting past Khairul Fahmi. What a start!
Kelantan's first chance of the game is taken by Wan Zack Haickal, as he springs the offside trap on the right of the penalty area. Izwan is quickly out though, cutting off his angles and standing tall before making the save with his feet. The first of several vital blocks for the LionsXII captain, and important because it kept the visitors in front and Kelantan under the gun.
Wan Zack could have done better to shoot across goal, but Izwan did very well to stay on his feet and dare his opponent to blink first.
Wan Zack makes a menace of himself once again, beating Izwan to a loose ball in the box and cutting it back to Erwin Carrillo, who's practically standing on the penalty spot. The Colombian has the whole goal to aim for and pulls the trigger almost immediately but he doesn't account for Nazrul Nazari.
The diminutive full back instantly sense the danger and flings himself at the shot, blocking it with his backside before scrambling away with the ball and dribbling out of danger. A disbelieving Carrillo can only hold his head in his hands. It'll prove to be his best chance of the match despite his many shots on target, as Izwan proceeds to put him in his back pocket for the rest of the game.
The scores are level late in the game, and it's a dangerous situation to be in. Nik Shahrul makes his second mistake of the match, and once again it proves to be Kelantan's undoing.
Sahil Suhami is fresh after coming on as a second-half substitute and he pounces before steaming into the opposition half. He looks to have Faris in support at first, but the LionsXII winger's legs look shot and he fails to get sufficiently clear. There are four defenders converging on Sahil in Red Warriors territory, but the Singaporean international is unperturbed, shifting the ball on to his right foot before unleashing a low 30-yard shot that beats Khairul Fahmi's dive and nestles into the bottom corner of the net. 1-2!
Supersub Sahil breaks Kelantan hearts as he seals victory for the LionsXII. Latching on to a long pass into the opposition half, the forward does well to shield the ball in the box and gets bundled over from behind by a clumsy Amirizwan Taj. The referee has no hesitation in blowing for the penalty and Sahil picks himself off the turf to take it.
The man of the moment is as cool as a cucumber, planting the ball firmly down the middle as Khairul Fahmi dives to his right. It is the moment that the Cup was won.
Photos: Football Association of Singapore