Football: Concentration lapses condemn LionsXII to 2-3 defeat by Pahang

KUANTAN, MALAYSIA - Three lapses in concentration saw a possible three points turn into zero as the LionsXII slumped to a 2-3 Malaysian Super League (MSL) defeat by Pahang at the Darul Makmur Stadium on Saturday.

Missing key striker Khairul Amri through injury, the LionsXII still took the lead in the 14th minute. Goalkeeper Izwan Mahbud's booming kick found its way to a roaming Faris Ramli in the final third. Bypassing two markers with a one-two move with Sahil Suhaimi, the 22-year-old slotted home from a tight angle.

However, the hosts hit back in the 36th minute. Pahang forward Azidan Sarudin crossed from the right flank, and Pahang's Argentinian striker Matias Conti headed forcefully into goal.

It got worse for the LionsXII just past the hour mark, as Pahang winger R. Gopinathan found himself unmarked, before smashing the ball into the roof of Izwan's net.

A disastrous night of defending was capped 10 minutes later when Fandi's charges failed to deal with a looping free-kick. The ball, via deflections from several players and the post, was eventually scrambled in by Azidan.

Despite Khairul Nizam's late consolation, the LionsXII remain winless on the road, losing twice and also drawing twice in their MSL travels so far.