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Football: LionsXII beat ATM 2-1

Defender Afiq Yunos scored a stoppage-time goal to secure a precious 2-1 away win for the LionsXII against Angkatan Tentera Malaysia (ATM) in a Malaysian Super League clash on Saturday night.

KUALA LUMPUR: Defender Afiq Yunos scored a stoppage-time goal to secure a precious 2-1 away win for the LionsXII against Angkatan Tentera Malaysia (ATM) in a Malaysian Super League clash on Saturday night.

The goal was the defender’s first of the season and helped Fandi Ahmad’s side to record their second win of the season.

It was also the perfect ending to an impressive comeback by the LionsXII who had found themselves a goal down just four minutes after the start of the game at the Selayang Stadium.

ATM had sent the LionsXII crashing out of the Malaysia Cup in the past two seasons and things did not look good for the Singapore side when ATM’s Amiridzwan Taj Tajuddin rose highest during a corner to nod a powerful header past LionsXII keeper Izwan Mahbud.

ATM almost made it 2-0 in the 16th minute when the ball-watching LionsXII defence allowed Hairuddin Omar all the time in the world to connect with a cross but fortunately for them, the ATM player fired his shot wide.

LionsXII defender Safuwan Baharudin almost equalised in the 36th minute when his lob dipped under the ATM crossbar but the ATM keeper superbly tipped the ball over.

But the LionsXII’s persistence finally paid off three minutes after the break when striker Khairul Amri shrugged off the presence of Nor Fazly Alias to bang home his third goal of the season.

ATM came close to scoring twice after that -- Safuwan cleared Argentinian striker Juan Arostegui’s header off the line while Marlon James later shot narrowly wide.

And so it was left to Afiq to pull off the late comeback win just when it seemed that the LionsXII were going to register their third draw of the season.

The LionsXII’s next game will be a home fixture against Kelantan.

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