BY OOI KIN FAI Follow on Twitter
The task faced by Johor Darul Ta'zim (JDT) in Sunday's match against Pahang in the 2017 FA Cup quarterfinal second leg isn't just the two goals deficit but also from a historical standpoint.
In the history of the cup competition since 2012, only three times has any team recover from a first leg defeat to qualify for the next stage of the competition. With the competition format only being a two-legged affair in the quarterfinal and semi-final stage - it means out of 24 times, only three times has any team managed to make a succesful comeback.
- 2013 quarterfinal: JDT lost 1-2 at home but won 2-1 away to Selangor to qualify on away goals rule
- 2015 semi-final: Kelantan lost 1-0 away to Pahang but won 3-1 at home to qualify on aggregate of 3-2
- 2016 semi-final: JDT lost 1-2 away to Kedah but won 3-1 at home to qualify on aggregate of 4-3
Yet, in every single one of those recoveries, all of them were after losing the first leg by a single goal margin. No team has since 2012, managed to overcome being two goals behind after the first leg to with the tie and move on the to next round of the competition.
Crucially for JDT, they managed to get an important away goal in the first leg played at Darul Makmur Stadium on the 1 April. An early goal for JDT on Sunday and the advantage would swing firmly on the side of the reigning FA Cup champions.
With an attacking line-up that possibly include the likes of Gabriel Guerra, Gonzalo Cabrera and Safiq Rahim - there's every reason for fans of the Southern Tigers to remain positive heading into the match.
Whatever happens, goals are the cards and that could mean a threat for the fans.