Malaysian champions Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) might be competing in the group stages of the AFC Champions League for the first time, but their displays in the ACL so far this season haven’t been ones that give away that point.
However, what concerns the Malaysia Super League club is the lack of points to show for their commendable displays in the first half of the ACL 2019 group stages. They have one point to show for all the exploits from their first three games in the continental championship.
They made a decent debut in Asia’s biggest club football competition after being handed the toughest opponent they could have thought of. Against defending champions Kashima Antlers, JDT did not collapse but instead fought neck-and-neck before going down 2-1.
In their home debut at Larkin, watched on by Brazilian legend Ronaldo, JDT put on board their first point from ACL with a 1-1 draw against South Korean side Gyeongnam FC — courtesy of a Diogo penalty in the second half that levelled things up.
Chinese Super League side Shandong Luneng was up next, but the Southern Tigers once again fell narrowly to goals from Marouane Fellaini and Graziano Pelle despite Safawi Rasid scoring a screamer to reduce the deficit in the second half.
So, what has been bugging Johor in their maiden AFC Champions League campaign? Let’s take a look!