Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Kim Swee’s boys can enter semis by avoiding huge loss to Indonesia

JAKARTA: The Malaysian football team may not have to wait for the outcome of their final Group A match against hosts Indonesia on Thursday to confirm their semi-final ticket.

Thanks to the organisers’ foul-up with the fixtures, coach Ong Kim Swee’s men will know their fate earlier after the Singapore-Thailand match, which kicks off at 5pm. Malaysia play Indonesia at 8pm.

Unbeaten Indonesia have confirmed their semi-final ticket with nine points from three wins. Second-placed Malaysia, with seven points, should clinch the other semi-final ticket since third-placed Singapore are three points adrift.

Malaysia need only a point to advance while Singapore must beat Thailand by more than five goals to sneak through if the Malaysians lose.
Coming through: Malaysia’s A. Thamil Arasu (right) attempts to dribble past Cambodia’s Sok Rithy during their Group A match on Sunday. Malaysia won 4-1. –EPA
In fact, Malaysia can afford to lose by a couple of goals as Singapore can only edge past on goal difference if they beat Thailand by four clear goals.
And if Singapore can only beat Thailand 1-0, the only way they can clinch a place in the semis is if Indonesia hammer Malaysia 5-0 or more.

Kim Swee said he would not be taking any chances and Malaysia would still be playing to win whatever the outcome of the Singapore-Thailand match.
“I’m sure Indonesia will also want to finish as group champions to avoid meeting the winners of Group B in the crossover semi-finals,” he said.

Myanmar and Vietnam have confirmed their places in the last four from Group B.
Kim Swee said anything could happen especially as Singapore would be going all out to score a big win over Thailand, who are out of the running.
The Thais have only three points from three matches and have failed to reach the semi-finals for the second consecutive Games.

“Our fate is in our own hands. It has been a good outing especially to remain unbeaten in the ‘Group of Death’.
“The boys have shown good character and the match against Indonesia will allow us to see how they handle the pressure of playing in front of 100,000 hostile fans,” said Kim Swee.


No comments:

Post a Comment