SINGAPORE - The opponents had just ended their 10-match unbeaten run in the Malaysian Super League last Saturday with a 1-0 win in Petaling Jaya.
In last night's return match at Jalan Besar Stadium, the table-topping LionsXII exacted sweet revenge on the Selangor PKNS team, thrashing them 5-0 in their biggest win so far.
Up 3-0 by half-time, courtesy of some calamitous defending by PKNS in dead-ball situations, the Lions looked a completely different side to the tired team that limped to last Saturday's defeat.
Perhaps they were energised by the fact that they would have completed their toughest stretch of the season - six matches in 18 days - after last night's match, and would have a 16-day break until their next match, away against second-placed Kelantan, on May 5.
Whatever the reason, the Lions were fluent in attack and resolute in defence against PKNS, with the victory putting them eight points ahead of Kelantan, who were playing Teregganu T-Team at press time last night and still have three games in hand.
Free-kick specialist Shaiful Esah, in particular, had an inspired evening.
His 17th-minute free kick from the right was exquisite - swerving and dipping dangerously, causing panic among the PKNS defence.