Talking Points: No shame for JDT, lucky Fazly

Johor Darul Ta’zim’s (JDT) defeat to Japan’s Gamba Osaka highlighted the difference in standard between the two countries. FourFourTwo highlights several talking points from Tuesday’s AFC Champions League Playoff clash at Suita City Football Stadium. 

“We'll be back”

Shortly after being disposed by Gamba, Benjamin Mora told reporters that the Malaysia Super League (MSL) champions will be back challenging again at the same stage next year.

Such is the determination and benchmark the club have set. No other Malaysian club have ever reached the Champions League playoff round and no other MSL team look close to making the breakthrough than JDT.

Mora is still new at the club following JDT’s decision to part ways with Mario Gomez in January, and surely the former would feel he could have prepared the squad better or even build the squad the way he wants it had he been appointed sooner.

Yet the vision at JDT has been to always look ahead and that is what Mora wants to do.

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Mora vows to be back at the same stage this time next year

JDT weren't completely brushed aside

The Southern Tigers didn’t see much action in the opposition box but the club did ask some questions of Gamba in the middle of the park with Gonzalo Cabrera causing them problems on some occasions.

The difference in class may have been telling, but what else was expected of a Malaysian club playing a top club from Japan?

Yet JDT players showed they had the fight not to let Gamba run circles around them.

Mora had the team organised and later made a tactical switch with left-winger Safawi Rasid moving to the centre and Cabrera shifting to the side to beef up the centre, allowing the Argentinean more space to cause trouble from the flanks.

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Gamba got the win they wanted but JDT had some fight in them. Photo: Gamba Osaka