Aug 31, 2014

BLACK DRAGONS DOWN CHONBURI FC TO FINISH THIRD

Frenz United Malaysia defeated defending champions Chonburi FC of Thailand 3-1 in the second-leg of the third-fourth placing match in the FAM-Frenz Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 at Frenz Stadium in Janda Baik, Pahang.

A brace from Muhammad Akhmar Haiqal (37th and 65th) and Muhammad Fareez(41st) sealed Black Dragons impressive victory by 3-1 aggregate after both teams played to a goalless draw in the first-leg encounter at Chonburi Stadium last week.

The hosts picked up a US$15,000 (RM49,500) cheque while Chonburi FC received US$7,500 ( RM24,750) in the tournament which boasts one of the most lucrative prize money ever offered in the region for an under-age competition. The total prize money on offer in ACT 2014 is US$100,000 (RM330,000).

In tomorrow’s second-leg final of the ACT 2014, S. Balachandran’s Harimau Muda D will take on PVF Vietnam at the same venue. The Young Tigers won 2-1 in the first-leg encounter in Ho Chi Minh City last week.

If the estimated 2,000 Frenz United Malaysia fans were expecting a stern test from the defending champions they were certainly in for a surprise as Suphakorn Noima’s boys were far from the side that showed so much of promise leading up to the semi-finals of the ACT 2014.

With 15-goal hero Sittichok Paso rested on the bench in the first half, they were evidently lacking in firepower upfront as skipper Saharat Sontisawat, strikers Chaiwat Weerakijphanich and Kritthanapong Paidaen did all they could except find the net.

On the opposite end, Black Dragons dominated much of the first half and had a first good opportunity in the 32nd minute when Mohamed Akhmar Haiqal’s cross from the left flank was met with a header by Aidel Nur Iman. The ball sailed past the outstretched goalkeeper Chakhon Philakhlang only to hit the bar.

Black Dragons, however, opened account five minutes later when they were awarded a penalty by match referee Rozyman Aidit Ibrahim from Brunei after Akhmar Haiqal was brought down by defender Autthagowit Jantod inside the box. Akhmar made no mistake from the spot to take his personal goal tally to eight in the tournament.

But there was more to come from the Black Dragons and the fans loved it. Four minutes before interval, striker Muhammad Fareez Jeffrey made it 2-0 with a header after picking a well-timed cross from Muhammad Hafizzudin from the left flank. The Thais had no answers to the quick-attack and aggressive play of the home team.

Chonburi FC returned in the second half with one major change – bringing on Sittichok for the injured Arthit Kangsangwet. The Thais took control of the match briefly but the hosts continued their bright start by going 3-0 up by the 65th minute through a grounder shot from Akhmar off a corner.

The Thais pulled a goal back in the 75th minute from a Sitichok penalty - his 16th goal in the tournament and making him a top candidate once again for the 2014 Top striker and Most Valuable Player awards.  He won both awards last year.

#ACT2014 #FrenzUnited #ChonburiFC 

BATTLE OF THE UNBEATABLES

The return leg of the FAM-Frenz Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 between Harimau Muda ‘D’ and PVF Vietnam in Janda Baik, Pahang on Sunday is not all about two teams battling for the coveted trophy and US$50,000 winner’s purse.

It is, however, a classic story of two players whose games have developed by leaps and bounds in the ACT 2014 and are set to take centre stage when S. Balachandran’s Harimau Muda Under-16 and Nguyen Phuc Nguyen Chuong’s PVF Vietnam renew their title rivalry.

Young Tiger’s striker Kogileswaran Raj and PVF Vietnam’s Nguyen Vu Tin are two players who can transform the facade of the second leg final with just a moment of brilliance on the pitch.

Kogileswaran and Nguyen Vu have earned the reputation of not only being top notch strikers but the duo can also be counted on where others fail to deliver when the chips are down.

The Malaysian has scored 14 goals in the tournament – one short of Chonburi FC’s leading goal poacher Sittichok Paso, while Nguyen Vu has found the net 12 times in 11 matches.

The Young Tigers defeated the Vietnamese 2-1 in the first-leg final at the Thong Nhat Stadium in Ho Chi Minh City on Monday, with Kogileswaran putting the visitors ahead with a 39th minute penalty but Le Ngoc Bao cancelled it with a 72nd minute equaliser before Muhammad Najmuddin Samat snatched the winner against the run of play three minutes later.

Though Harimau Muda Under-16 returned home with a comfortable 2-1 first leg win over the Vietnamese, it is still too early for the fireworks and celebrations as far as coach Balachandran is concerned.

“Yes, I am extremely excited with our win in Vietnam but we cannot afford to be very comfortable with the 2-1 advantage. PVF Vietnam will be under pressure to score two goals at Janda Baik to pull away,” said Balachandran at a pre-final press conference in Kelana Jaya.

“And this is where our defenders must be focused and play hard to deny them of any opportunity,” he added.

“You just never know as anything can happen. We have always been playing an attacking game for the past few months and will maintain this system and rhythm against PVF Vietnam,” he said, adding that the midfield and attacking machinery in the squad have been having cordial understanding.

A win on Sunday will also be a timely boost for the Harimau Muda ‘D’ in the preparation for the upcoming Asian Football Confederation Under-16 championships in Bangkok next month. The top four teams will earn qualification to the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in Chile.

PVF Vietnam assistant head coach Ha Vuong Ngau Nai heralded his team’s perseverance against the Malaysians and warned his rivals that the battle is far from over yet.

“We have come here having learned from our mistakes back home in the first leg final,” said Ha Vuong. “We believe we can improve in our return match and we are looking forward towards it.”

The tournament boasts one of the most lucrative prize money ever offered in the region for an under-age competition. The total prize money on offer for the tournament is US$100,000. The winner will receive US$50,000, runners-up US$25,000, third and fourth-placed team US$15,000 and US$7,500 respectively and individual awards of Most Valuable Player will receive US$1,500 and Top Scorer will receive US$1,000. 

#FrenzUnited #ACT2014 #HarimauMuda 

Aug 26, 2014

HARIMAU MUDA STUN PVF VIETNAM IN FIRST-LEG FINAL

Coach S. Balachandran’s Harimau Muda secured a 2-1 victory over PVF Vietnam in the first leg final of the FAM-Frenz Asia Champions Trophy U-16 2014 at the Thong Nhat Stadium in Ho Chi Minh City.
  
The young tigers and PVF Vietnam will renew their title rivalry in the return leg match at Frenz Stadium in Janda Baik, Pahang this Sunday.

“I'm satisfied with this score since we are playing in Vietnam. I would like to congratulate my boys for a great job here,” said Balachandran, adding that they will now aim to score more goals back home.

“‎In the first half, PVF Vietnam played a defensive game but we managed to find the space to score the opening goal. I was rather worried about the pitch condition but things got better when the water receded,” he said.

The kick-off was earlier delayed for an hour following a heavy downpour and when play got underway there was little the Malaysians could do on a water logged pitch.

On the opposite end, the Vietnamese seem to have adapted fast and showed glimpses of brilliance on the wet pitch as they went about firing on all cylinders.

Striker Pham Trong Hua squandered two chances that came his way, the first in the third minute when his header went wide after goalkeeper Muhd Asri Muhammad failed to latch onto the ball, and the second five minute later when he shot into the side net.

The young tigers, however, shrugged off the early scare by showing plenty of grit as they battled back to silence the estimated 500 home fans with a penalty in the 39th minute after midfielder Najib Abdullah was brought down inside the penalty box by defender Le Thanh Phong.

Striker Kogileswaran Raj packed enough power from the spot to send goalkeeper Phan Van Bieu the wrong way for Harimau Muda Under-16’s opening goal and his 14th in the tournament as the Malaysians grabbed a 1-0 half time lead.

The Vietnamese put that disappointment behind in the second half and rocked the Malaysians confidence with a Le Ngoc Bao header in the 71st minute after a receiving a cross from Thanh Phong from the right flack.

But that joy only short-lived just as it erupted into wild celebrations much earlier as Harimau Muda U-16 responded immediately three minutes later through Muhammad Najmuddin Samat who cleverly maneuvered his way past an onrushing goalkeeper Van Bieu to put the ball into goal and in the process seal the game 2-1 in favour of the visitors.

PVF Vietnam tried all they could in the remaining minutes in search for the equalizer but was denied by the Malaysian defenders bent on returning home with this slim victory.

Meanwhile, defending champions Chonburi FC and Frenz United Malaysia played to a goalless draw in the first leg of their third-fourth placing match at the Chonburi Stadium on Sunday.


The return leg match will be played on Saturday, August 30, 2014 at Frenz Stadium (Kick-off time 4.30pm).

#ACT2014 #FrenzUnited 

YOUNG TIGERS AIM TO GAIN POSITIVE RESULT

After convincingly ending defending champions Chonburi FC’s reign, Harimau Muda U-16 go into tomorrow’s first-leg final of the FAM-Frenz Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 against PVF Vietnam looking to seize the opportunity at the Thong Nhat Stadium in Ho Chi Minh City.

Although PVF Vietnam has not been defeated at home in the competition, Harimau Muda Coach S. Balachandran strongly believes his players have the pedigree, character and discipline to overcome the pressure and leave with a positive result.

“First of all I would like to thank Frenz United for organising this big competition for the Under-16 boys which has been a good platform to gain experience and improve their skills,” said Balachandran at a pre-match press conference which was also attended by PVF Vietnam head coach Nguyen Phuc Nguyen Chuong, captain Tran Van Hoa and his Harimau Muda Under-16 compatriot, Mohd Shahrul Akmal in Ho Chi Minh City.

“It is a good opportunity for my boys as well for them (PVF Vietnam) for the exposure and also prepare for the forthcoming AFC Under-16 Championships in Bangkok."

He added that the players have been together for 18 months and played in total 35 international matches this year. In the last 18 months, they have shown tremendous improvements with more attacking games and high scoring results. 

For the record, Harimau Muda U-16 suffered a 2-1 defeat against PVF Vietnam in the first round of their group stage match played at the same venue. However, in an astonishing reversal of fortunes, the Malaysians cruised through 3-0 at Janda Baik in their second round encounter.

"We lost 2-1 to PVF Vietnam in group stage because it was played during the Fasting month. Most of my players were fasting and it was really a hot season in Ho Chi Minh City. My game tempo was slow and the players got tired very fast,” said Balachandran.

“I can honestly say the boys are all fired up for the final and we will adopt the same game-style in our victory over Chonburi FC (6-1 aggregate) when we play PVF Vietnam tomorrow. We have come to win and want to return home with the pressure on them instead,” he added.
  
Striker Kogisleswaran Raj, who took the brunt of the knocks and kicks against Chonburi FC in a highly-tensed second-leg semi-finals tie last week, is back on his feet to lead the charge together with Muhammad Najmuddin Samat, Muhammad Zulkahiri Mohd and skipper Mohd Shahrul Akmal who were all instrumental in Harimau Muda’s 6-1 aggregate win over Chonburi FC.

Young tiger’s skipper, Shahrul Akmal, quipped: "We will play our best with the aim to score more goals and return home with a win. We will definitely go all out.”

Meanwhile, PVF Vietnam head coach Nguyen Phuc Nguyen Chuong said the mood in the Vietnamese camp is equally vibrant with high expectations following their superb run.

“It's big competition for my Under-16 boys.  We have seen a big improvement from the players compared to last year. The experience has been great,” added Nguyen Phuc.

“We are very excited to play Harimau Muda once again but this time we meet in the final. It is a very different situation now compared to the last time we met but I believe the pressure is on both teams to win here,” said Nguyen, through an interpreter.

The Vietnamese, firing on all-cylinders, will place much hopes on their top scorer Nguyen Vu Tin who scored a hat-trick against Frenz United Malaysia in the first-leg semi-finals in Ho Chi Minh City to get the goals against the young tigers.


However, Nguyen Phuc dismissed this by saying: “Every player in our team is capable of scoring so it’s not all about just Vu Tin. We have a good team and are looking forward to this tie which should be very exciting.”

#ACT2014 #FrenzUnited

Aug 13, 2014

BLACK DRAGONS STUMBLE; YOUNG LIONS SURPRISE CHONBURI

Nguyen Vu Tin stole the show with a hat-trick as PVF Vietnam defeated Frenz United Malaysia 3-0 in the first leg semi-finals of the Asia Champions Trophy U-16 2014 at the Thong Nhat Stadium in Ho Chi Minh City on Sunday.

Vu Tin’s three goals – taking his tournament total to 11 – momentarily crippled Frenz United’s march into the August 23 and August 30 home-and-away final as the Malaysians are now faced with a mammoth task of scoring four clear goals in the return leg semi-finals at Frenz Stadium on August 17 to be sure of a spot in the final.

Anything less in front of their die-hard fans at on Saturday would mean the final could be a contest between Harimau Muda U-16, defending champions Chonburi FA and PVF Vietnam who are still in the running. Coach S. Balachandran’s young tigers scored an emphatic 3-1 win over Chonburi FA in the first leg semi-finals last Saturday and are geared up for the final blow against the Thais this weekend in the Thai provincial city.

The Vietnamese went 2-0 up in the first half with strikes from Vu Tin in the 22nd and 37th minutes and the youngster who affirmed his status as a potentially dangerous striker kept the momentum going until the 84th minute for his hat-trick to wrap up the rout and Malaysians misery.

For Frenz United Malaysia coach, Matdinos Talib, the battle is far from over despite the huge blow suffered today and believes his boys are still capable of turning the tide around in Janda Baik.

“We had our chances. We did control the match although the score line may not suggest that. It is a setback but we will get back into the game in the return-leg semi-finals,” said Matdinos, adding that the defenders had let the team down and would find ways to overcome this situation.

He also envisaged that the cool surroundings of Janda Baik would give them an advantage compared to the sweltering heat conditions in Vietnam.

PVF Vietnam head coach Nguyen Phuc Nguyen Chuong says the three-goal cushion going into the return leg is a big welcome to his side but nevertheless cautioned his players of being in over-confident mode.

“It will not be easy at all in Janda Baik for the return leg semi-finals and I can see that coming,” said Nguyen Phuc. “We must play our best as the Malaysians enjoy home ground advantage and always play extremely well at home.”

Meanwhile, strikers Najib Abdullah, Amirul Syazwan and Kogileswaran Raj fired Harimau Muda U-16 2014 to a 3-1 victory over defending champions Chonburi FA in the first leg semi-finals at Frenz Stadium on Saturday.

It was just another day of a dramatic performance from coach S. Balachandran’s young tigers in the ACT 2014 as they clawed back from a Sittichok Paso 16th minute goal – his 15th in the tournament, to send the Thais packing home bruised and battered.

The Malaysians take a two-goal advantage going into the return leg tie on August 18 in Chonburi and Balachandran feels Saturday’s victory has been an ideal challenge by his players to test their mettle against one of the strongest side in ACT 2014 and also justify their position for a slot in the August 23 and August 30 home-and-away final.

Balachandran paraded his most fortified line-up against the Thais with Kogisleswaran leading the charge upfront. The former Bukit Bandaraya student in Bangsar, who joined the FA of Malaysia Academy in Gambang last year, has been a bane to many defenders and proved his prowess once again.

Skipper Mohd Shahrul Akmal marshalled from the middle, Najib played his role mapped out clearly for him from the left flank extremely well with Mohd Zulkhairi on the right and Dinesh Rajasingam occasionally lurking dangerously to unsettle the visitors. It was Harimau Muda Under-16’s most lethal strike force. 

“I am very excited with this win. The boys showed tremendous patience and mental strength to come back after going down early in the game. But we can also expect an equally strong fight back from Chonburi in the return leg match. They are not going to rest here,” said Balachandran.

“We have one week to prepare our strategy against the Thais and I believe the boys know what to expect and what needs to be done. Our ultimate goal is to qualify for the final,” he added.

Backed by an estimated 2,000 folks of Janda Baik which includes FA of Malaysia General-Secretary Dato’ Hamidin Mohd Amin, the Malaysians and Thais got off to a cautious start, not wanting to be far too adventurous in the early minutes of play.

The defending champions arrived in Janda Baik with Peerayat Kaminthong, the team’s mastermind, lurking in the middle, Sittichok who bagged the Most Valuable Player and Top Striker awards at the 2013 ACT Under-15 championships, and Kritthanapong Paidaen marauding dangerously from the flanks. 

After a couple of near misses from both sides, Chonburi FA struck first through Sittichok with a thunderbolt 35-metre shot which caught goalkeeper Mohd Asri Mohd off guard as the ball sailed the near the far left post and dipped into the net.

Buoyed by the early goal, the Thais, who have been unbeaten throughout the Group B preliminary round stage, further exploited the situation by pressing on upfront but were denied by their own sloppy finishing.

However, in a sudden burst of attack in the 27th minute, the young tigers won their second corner of the day. Kogileswaran turned the ball in and Najib headed it past goalkeeper Chakon Philakhlang. Harimau Muda 1 Chonburi FA 1.

The match tempo turned intensive in the second half with the Thais having a strong grip in the early minutes and almost went 2-1 up had striker Saharat Sontisawat pounced on a loose ball in front of the Malaysian goalmouth.

But the night truly belonged to the young tigers who stole the thunder from the Thais, forcing Chakon to pull off a few brilliant saves. Substitute Amirul made it 2-1 in the 76th minute with a cheeky finish and Kogileswaran sealed it 3-1 seven minutes before the end with a right-foot shot past Chakon after receiving a pass from Mohd Najmuddin in a one-on-one situation inside the box.

#FrenzUnited #HarimauMuda #ACT2014

HARIMAU MUDA U-16 SURPRISE CHONBURI AT JANDA BAIK

Strikers Najib Abdullah, Amirul Syazwan and Kogileswaran Raj fired Harimau Muda U-16 2014 to a 3-1 victory over defending champions Chonburi FA in the first leg semi-finals of the Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 (ACT 2014) at Frenz Stadium on Saturday.

It was just another day of a dramatic performance from coach S. Balachandran’s young tigers in the ACT 2014 as they clawed back from a Sittichok Paso 16th minute goal – his 15th in the tournament, to sent the Thais packing home bruised and battered.

The Malaysians take a two-goal advantage going into the return leg tie on August 18 in Chonburi and Balachandran feels Saturday’s victory has been an ideal challenge by his players to test their mettle against one of the strongest side in ACT 2014 and also justify their position for a slot in the August 23 and August 30 home-and-away final.
 
Balachandran paraded his most fortified line-up against the Thais with Kogisleswaran leading the charge upfront. The former Bukit Bandaraya student in Bangsar, who joined the FA of Malaysia Academy in Gambang last year, has been a bane to many defenders and proved his prowess once again.

Skipper Mohd Shahrul Akmal marshalled from the middle, Najib played his role mapped out clearly for him from the left flank extremely well with Mohd Zulkhairi on the right and Dinesh Rajasingam occasionally lurking dangerously to unsettle the visitors. It was Harimau Muda Under-16’s most lethal strike force. 

“I am very excited with this win. The boys showed tremendous patience and mental strength to come back after going down early in the game. But we can also expect an equally strong fight back from Chonburi in the return leg match. They are not going to rest here,” said Balachandran.

“We have one week to prepare our strategy against the Thais and I believe the boys know what to expect and what needs to be done. Our ultimate goal is to qualify for the final,” he added.

Backed by an estimated 2,000 folks of Janda Baik which includes FA of Malaysia General-Secretary Dato’ Hamidin Mohd Amin, the Malaysians and Thais got off to a cautious start, not wanting to be far too adventurous in the early minutes of play.

The defending champions arrived in Janda Baik with Peerayat Kaminthong, the team’s mastermind, lurking in the middle, Sittichok who bagged the Most Valuable Player and Top Striker awards at the 2013 ACT Under-15 championships, and Kritthanapong Paidaen marauding dangerously from the flanks. 

After a couple of near misses from both sides, Chonburi FA struck first through Sittichok with a thunderbolt 35-metre shot which caught goalkeeper Mohd Asri Mohd off guard as the ball sailed the near the far left post and dipped into the net.

Buoyed by the early goal, the Thais, who have been unbeaten throughout the Group B preliminary round stage, further exploited the situation by pressing on upfront but were denied by their own sloppy finishing.

However, in a sudden burst of attack in the 27th minute, the young tigers won their second corner of the day. Kogileswaran turned the ball in and Najib headed it past goalkeeper Chakon Philakhlang. Harimau Muda 1 Chonburi FA 1.

The match tempo turned intensive in the second half with the Thais having a strong grip in the early minutes and almost went 2-1 up had striker Saharat Sontisawat pounced on a loose ball in front of the Malaysian goalmouth.

But the night truly belonged to the young tigers who stole the thunder from the Thais, forcing Chakon to pull off a few brilliant saves. Substitute Amirul made it 2-1 in the 76th minute with a cheeky finish and Kogileswaran sealed it 3-1 seven minutes before the end with a right-foot shot past Chakon after receiving a pass from Mohd Najmuddin in a one-on-one situation inside the box.

#FrenzUnited #HarimauMuda #ACT2014

Aug 8, 2014

PUMA INTRODUCES FOREVER FASTER

New Brand Platform Signifies Mission to Become the Fastest Sport Brand in the World

KUALA LUMPUR (7 August, 2014): Finally, after much talk and hype, PUMA has formally launched its new global brand platform, Forever Faster, in Berjaya Times Square today.  

PUMA Southeast Asia General Manager, Miguel Andrade, said: “We believe every Malaysian has Forever Faster in them, being ambitious, bold and charismatic in nature. It is not about making Malaysians Forever Faster, but rather bringing the Forever Faster out of them.”

“This is an exciting project that we have been looking forward to for some time now, and cannot wait to commence future consumer interactions,” added Andrade, who also invited members of the public and media to challenge the ‘The Red Wall’, a three-metre high vertical wall that is so imposing.

The idea behind the wall aims to highlight the values that make up Forever Faster, which envelopes around bravery, determination, joy and most of all confidence.

PUMA Malaysia ‘Football Ambassador’ – Malaysian Armed Forces defender K. Reuben, national swimmer Khoo Cai Lin and squash player Low Wee Wern also made their appearance at the launch.

Reuben, well on the road to recovery after undergoing a knee surgery recently, strongly believes Forever Faster has given him the growing confidence to push forward. He said: “It is a timely launch by PUMA. It’s been a huge boost for me in my capacity as footballer and I find Forever Faster a campaign that will tremendously help me get back on trail.”

“I believe this campaign will also help all athletes with determination, bravery and confidence to succeed. Forever Faster will take you towards the right path with all these ingredients of success.” said Reuben.

National and Kelantan goalkeeper Khairul Fahmi Che Mat, 25, better known as ‘Apek’ among Malaysian football fans, and Selangor striker Paulo Rangel, who also add up to PUMA’s growing list of ‘Football Ambassadors’ also view Forever Faster as an opportunity to move forward.

Khairul, who is currently in Tajikistan with national team, aims to get back on stride and be rated as the country’s top goalkeeper after a series of ‘not so inspiring performances’ in recent times. He says: “Forever Faster simply gives you that extra sense of confidence. It’s far different than anything else I have experienced before. I believe PUMA’s new global brand platform of being the best and the first will surely motivate every athlete.”  
  
The 28-year-old Rangel, who was instrumental in Selangor's strong run in the 2014 Malaysia Super League by scoring 16 goals throughout the season and voted Goal’s Best Malaysian Super League Player, is ecstatic with PUMA’s latest innovative campaign to be the fastest and first.
Forever Faster really motivates athletes to be at their best and be at the forefront of everything we strive on. It evolves around our determination to succeed at the highest level which gives us the true meaning of success and happiness,” said the Brazilian as he prepares for the tough challenges ahead with Red Giants in the Malaysia Cup which kicks off next week.

With the mission to become the Fastest Sport Brand in the World, Forever Faster is targeted to a selective group called, ‘Game Changers’ who are active progressive athletes aged 16-24. The platform will be driven through a comprehensive global multi-media marketing campaign that includes a TVC spot, featuring some of the World’s finest sporting personalities. 

Forever Faster embodies athletes who stand out as individuals through both performance and personality.  Jamaican Usain Bolt, widely regarded as the fastest man on Earth as he holds both the 100 metres and 200 metres world records since fully automatic time measurements became mandatory in 1977, features in the Forever Faster TVC with football icons Mario Balotelli, Sergio Ag├╝ero, Marta Vieira da Silva; golfers Rickie Fowler and Lexi Thompson; and the Scuderia Ferrari Formula One team. 

The spot also sees these sportsmen and women challenging the conventional - taking risks through determination, bravery, confidence and joy. 

Forever Faster embraces the thrill of being first, the swagger of being the best, and the fun of being able to adapt; but it is also an ethos that goes beyond the boundaries of a marketing campaign.  It signifies the desire to quickly identify product designs and innovation, trends and style and bring them into the marketplace in a more dynamic manner. As well as a brand platform, Forever Faster is also a company mentality.  

In the coming months, the public can expect various activities as well as products themed around Forever Faster, with Mobium Elite Speed and Night Cat training mini-pods confirmed to be introduced in Malaysia late August. Also on the cards will be the PUMA Night Run, which will take place on 25 October 2014, with registrations opening on 8 August, 2014.


For more information, please visit PUMA Malaysia Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/PumaMalaysia 

To view the Forever Faster TVC, please click on the following link:


#PUMA #FOREVERFASTER 

RISE AND CLASH OF THE TITANS

High expectations and big dreams but the fiesta is far from over for defending champions Chonburi FC, title pretenders PVF Vietnam, Harimau Muda Under-16 and Frenz United Malaysia in the Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014.

The ‘Young Tigers’ and Frenz United Malaysia, dubbed the ‘Black Dragons’, aim to ruin the escalating dreams and hopes of Chonburi FC and PVF Vietnam when the semi-finals of Asia’s richest youth tournament which offers a total prize money of US$100,000 (RM330,000) gets underway this weekend.

Harimau Muda Under-16 coach S. Balachandran has called on his young tigers to add more bite into their game against the Thais in the first-leg semi-finals at Frenz Stadium in Janda Baik, Pahang this Saturday. The second-leg will be played on August 18 at the Chonburi FC Stadium. For the record, the Thais remained the only team in ACT 2014 to record seven straight wins and two draws in Group A of the preliminary round.

Prolific goal-poacher Kogileswaran Raj Mohana Raj, the young tigers leading scorer with 11 goals, will be the striker Balachandran hopes to unleash and prise open Chonburi’s highly shaky and porous defence when under intense pressure.

The Thais have scored a total of 36 goals but it is their unpredictable defence line that riles head coach Withaya Laohakul having witnessed how easily his players succumbed to pressure by allowing 12 goals past them.

“We have never played Chonburi before but we will take the field with the same kind of tenacity and discipline which saw us beat PVF Vietnam by three goals in our last group match,” said Balachandran who is bracing for a tough encounter against Chonburi.

“What is important is that we maintain our momentum going into the semi-finals with the underdogs tag. That will lift the pressure off us and I am sure the boys are eager to win this first round battle at home with the support of our fans in Janda Baik,” he added.

Organised by Frenz United Football Club in collaboration with the Football Association of Malaysia and Asian Football Confederation, the Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 is an ‘upgraded’ version of the 2013 ASEAN Under-15 Champions Trophy which Chonburi FC claimed with a 4-1 aggregate victory over Frenz United Malaysia A in last year’s final.

However, the new version of the ACT 2014 is spread over a wider platform with the participation of Guangdong FA (China) and India’s National Under-16 (AIFF), bringing the total number of teams competing to 12. Timor Leste National Under-16, LAO Toyota (Laos), Myanmar Academy FC, Frenz United Indonesia and Singapore’s Home United FC add up to the numbers.

The competition format is mirrored that of the Champions league, beginning with a first round group stage which started on May 17 followed by the knockout stage. Top two teams in each group advance to the August 9-10 first-leg semi-finals followed by second-leg semi-finals on August 17-18. The final, also played on a home-and-away basis, is scheduled for August 23 and August 30.

The Champions will receive US$50,000 (RM165,000), runners-up US$25,000 (RM80,000), third and fourth placed teams US$12,500 (RM40,000) and US$7, 500  (RM24,000) respectively. Additional to that are the individual awards of Most Valuable Player who will receive US$3,000 (RM9,600) and the Top Scorer gains to receive US$2,000 (RM6,400).

Frenz United Football Club held a ‘Hari Raya Aidilfitri Open House’ for members of the media today which was also attended by Frenz United FC president, Dato’ Noor Ihsan Hamid, senior Frenz United FC Officials, sponsors and respective managers and captains of teams who have qualified for the semi-finals of the ACT 2014.

“The Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 is one of the major tournaments organised by Frenz United FC primarily to promote the continued development of young footballers in this region,” said Dato’ Noor Ihsan. “The tournament was conceived to showcase the true emerging regional talents to the world at large and more importantly raise the overall level of regional professionalism to unprecedented high.”

“Frenz United FC investment in the future of football is propelling itself as one of the leading football capitals of the region. With this status, the Asia Champions Trophy Under-16 2014 will be a key international event in the world of youth football,” he said, adding that Frenz United FC vision of developing players at the junior level has been fruitful.

“The Asia Champions Trophy will also act as a platform with a right exposure playing against good teams. We hope with this effort they will go on to represent their respective countries beginning with the AFC Under-16 Championships in September,” said Dato’ Noor Ihsan.

With a series of good performances in the preliminary round, Frenz United Malaysia team manager Ahmad Fairu   z Mohd Yunus is however fully aware of PVF Vietnam’s strength in their own backyard and hopes that his boys withstand the pressure-cooker atmosphere this Sunday at Thong Nhat Stadium.

“We are confident that our team will be able to take the game to PVF Vietnam and will ensure a tough encounter for our Vietnamese opponents. The boys are raring to go and hope to capitalise on the weakness within PVF,” said Fairuz.

Meanwhile, PVF Vietnam representative, Luong Thi Phuong Dung, has warned the players against any form of complacency against Frenz United Malaysia as the Malaysians are in top form.

“Frenz United Malaysia has quite a number of skilful players and it will be a grave mistake on our part to underestimate them,” said Luong. “The fact that Frenz United Malaysia is in the semi-finals shows they are a team to be respected."

She added that as favourites, PVF Vietnam will bounce back from that 3-0 defeat against Harimau Muda Under-16 on July 19 and play like champions in the semi-finals.

“The morale of the team is high. We have put that 3-0 defeat behind us and are now focussed on our semi-finals match against Frenz United Malaysia,” she said, adding that with home ground advantage at Thong Nhat stadium they hope to pull off a positive result going into the return-leg match.

The Vietnamese, who have been hogging the limelight since May 17 this year, missed out of the 2013 semi-finals by a mere point - finishing third behind Chonburi FC and Frenz United  Malaysia ‘A’ at the end of the preliminary round. However, they seemed to have learned from that bitter experience and returned this year with outstanding performance to lead Group A with 25 points following eight wins and a draw.

Fixtures – August 9: 1st Leg Semi-finals: Harimau Muda U-16 v Chonburi FC (Frenz Stadium, Janda Baik, 8.45pm); August 10: PVF Vietnam vs Frenz United Malaysia (Thong Nat stadium, Ho Chi Minh City, 5.00pm).


August 17– 2nd Leg semi-finals: Frenz United Malaysia vs PVF Vietnam (Frenz Stadium, Janda Baik, 8.45pm); August 18: Chonburi FC v Harimau Muda U-16 (Chonburi Stadium, 5.00pm).

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