Safuwan: Hafiz did not deserve red card

Singapore star Safuwan Baharudin believes that Hafiz Sujad did not deserve his red card in the Lions's 0-0 draw against the Philippines during their opening Group A game of the 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup.

The Lions had to dig deep in Manila on Saturday to earn a point at the home of the co-hosts, especially after Hafiz was expulsed in the 34th minute for kicking Phil Younghusband in the chest.

Despite the apparent violence of the act, Safuwan told FourFourTwo that his co-star was innocent and that the call was a harsh one.

“I didn't see it clearly but iI think it was soft,” he said. “The ball was there to be played and he was looking at the ball and not the man.”

A desperate rearguard action kept the Azkals out for the rest of the game and the 25 year-old was satisfied with the performance.

“We have to be happy with the point,” Safuwan said. “We were a man down and we know that they are a footballing team with good players.”

The Malaysia-based star would have liked to have taken all three.

“We thought that we could sneak a goal from a set piece or something but we just were not able to do it but we will look forward to the next game and prepare as much as we can for that.”

Singapore take on defending champions Thailand on Tuesday seeking to pick up their first win of the campaign.

Photo: AFF