Hyrulnizam unfazed by Singapore’s version of ‘MSN’

The Home goalkeeper is ready to hold the highly-regarded front-three at bay, as the Protectors go in search of their first win of the season. 

In Spain’s La Liga, the trio of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar have been given the moniker, Barcelona’s ‘MSN’, after devastating oppositions to no end.

Back here in the S.League – although not on the same level of calibre – a similar strike force has appeared within Tampines Rovers and they have given themselves the tongue-in-cheek nickname, ‘JJB’.

The people in question belongs to the trio of Jermaine Pennant, Jordan Webb and Billy Mehmet after they helped the Stags to score 11 goals in their past three games.

'JJB’ sounds good, but I just want to get a clean sheet.

- Home goalkeeper Hyrulnizam Juma'at

It was a good name, Home United goalkeeper Hyrulnizam Juma’at admitted – but not one he would fuss about, especially when the Protectors are hosting Tampines next.

I have faced a lot of good strikers in my time in the AFC Cup and S.League, so it’s just another day against really good players,” Hyrulnizam asserted.

“I just have to think about myself, don’t think about them. ‘JJB’ sounds good, but I just want to get a clean sheet.”

To make the trio leave the Bishan Stadium in disappointment, Hyrulnizam believes the Protectors cannot afford Tampines too much respect.

And the 29-year-old has full confidence his team, especially his back four, will do just that against the Stags.

They need to show fear against our defenders,

- Hyrulnizam

“In their past three games, they have scored more than three goals each time and we have to be wary of that,” Hyrulnizam said.

“But my defenders will do the job, and they will be very disciplined against Tampines.

“We respect them – ‘JJB’ are three good forwards. But when we play against them we shouldn’t think about that.

“They need to show fear against our defenders, and not us showing them fear.”

'JJB' warming up for a match. Photo by: Weixiang Lim/ FFT

A good result for Home would not only inject some life back into the slow start the Bishan-based team have had to their season, but also be a huge confidence booster for himself, Hyrulnizam added.

This was especially after discovering he had missed out on a call-up to the centralised national team training held every Monday,

Not being selected was unpleasant, but Hyrulnizam believes it only means that he has to work harder.

“I have to play well first and then people will recognise me,” Hyrulnizam said.

“I have to step up my game. If I am good enough, the top will call me. I can’t be thinking about getting back to the national team now when I should be focusing on getting a full season in Home after a few injury-plagued years.

“Behind me may be several young keepers at Home United, but they are hungry and will be eager to take my place so I have to focus on retaining my spot here first.”

Photo By: Football Association of Singapore