The Tigers delivered when it matter most. After barrage of criticism especially on the first game against Singapore, Harimau Malaya proved that they still have it. In the scintillating game, showered by December rain, they gave superb performance to see off the Indonesian.
It was a must win game or face the humiliation, worse the wrath of Malaysian. Before the game Harimau Malaya already lost a speedy winger in K Gunalan. Not so good news as K Gunalan was having a good tournament tormenting the opponents from the left flank. In was Azimuddin Akil who be recalled as Zaquan Adha bowed out due to injury.
However it was Indonesia that settled down first in slippery condition. Malaysia had a nervy start as Indonesia pummeled relentless seeking an early goal. In the first 10 minutes Indonesia had more control of the ball while Malaysia made the chasing. Malaysian defense had to work hard to deny Indonesian speedy forwards. Aidil especially made numbers vital tackles and also Farizal the keeper made a few decent saves. It was Indonesia looked comfortable with the ball while Malaysia ball control and possession were awful.
As when the game progress Malaysia finally settled down. They played in their own game as the game plan drafted by Raja Gopal. Not following Indonesia rhythm Malaysia cooled down with possession football at midfield then quick to attack.
Suddenly Malaysia scored. In the 20th minutes, Mahali Jasuli, the leftback, send a perfect cross that met with Azamudin at far post. His first timer hit at the back of the net. Then three minutes later it was Mahali’s turn to get on the score sheet when he burst into the Indonesian penalty box to score from a tight angle to double Malaysia’s lead. It was made happen by the skillfully Wan Zack who made the assist.
Indonesia answered by bringing their Lionel Messi, Andik. He surely had the trickery to beat Malaysian’s player however his poor finishing made Malaysia relieved.
Malaysia picked up from where they left in the second half and continued with their very discipline game. So in the defense. They stood stoutly to stop the Indonesia. Though Indonesia kept press forward, they created no clear chances, while Malaysia had a few chances to kill the game. Final whistle it was Malaysia 2-0 Indonesia.
It was a great game indeed. Malaysia will take the Thais in the semi. With the first round of the leg will be held in Bukit Jalil, Harimau Malaysia must make all chances count. Thai is much better team, may be the best in this tournament. But a good team does not guarantee a title. There is always chance for Harimau Malaya. Just don’t write off their chance yet. There will be 180 minutes of battle, so Malaysia fans and the Ultras keep your support to the team.
WE ARE TEAM MALAYSIA