Kedah to watch out for Safuwan threat in Malaysia Cup semifinal

Kedah will be wary of Singapore midfielder Safuwan Baharudin, who is touted among the few PDRM FA players that could hurt them in the Malaysia Cup second leg semifinals at the Hang Jebat Stadium on Saturday.

The Canaries hold a slender 2-1 advantage coming into the reverse fixture, after goals from Thiago Augusto and Liridon Krasniqi had cancelled out an early Guilherme De Paula penalty.

But Tan Cheng Hoe -- on course to steer his young side to a second consecutive final - warned of the potency of the Cops, who will be locked and loaded to overturn the deficit.

"PDRM are good on the counter attack, they have fast players who can move the ball quickly. Safuwan, De Paula, Fakrul Aiman and Andre are just some of the players who could punish us is we sit back and defend," Tan told ESPN FC.

"We have to protect our advantage, and at the same time find another goal that would give us the cushion in this tie."

Tan saw a number of his players involved in national duties, for both the Under-22 and senior side the past week.

Shafiq Ahmad shone for the U22 with three goals in the two games against Brunei, while Rizal Ghazali and Khairul Helmi performed admirably in defence against Singapore last Friday.

Injuries have however ruled Khairul out, along with Syazwan Zainon who made his international debut in the 1-1 draw against Afghanistan on Tuesday.

"Khairul has a knee injury, Syazwan is out with a shoulder problem, while Ariff Farhan is also sidelined after an injury in the first leg. It is a problem for me as these are key players, but I will have to manage without them," Tan added.

With injury concerns in defence and midfield, the 2015 finalist will bank on the trio of Augusto, Krasniqi and Shane Smeltz to fire in the goals and take them to the final.

The three have netted five each in the competition and have gelled at just the right time.

Despite playing away, Kedah will not be shorn of support as many supporters are expected to make the trip to the south to watch their team navigate this potentially tricky encounter.

Selangor are away to T-Team in the other semifinals at the Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium on Saturday, holding a similar 2-1 lead.