Fri, 05 Dec 2003

Indonesia goes down to host Vietnam 1-0

The Jakarta Post, Hanoi

A ten-man Indonesia squad went down 1-0 to Vietnam on Thursday leaving it with a difficult task in its last match in Group A against defending champion Thailand.

The only scorer in the game at the My Dinh Stadium was Phan Thanh Binh in the 34th minute. Earlier, Thailand routed Laos 6-0.

Thailand and Vietnam have collected four points each with the former topping the table thanks to goal difference.

Indonesia, which only managed a 1-0 over Laos in the opening match, is now in third place with three points. It will be a do- or-die match for Indonesia against Vietnam on Sunday.

On Thursday, Indonesia had to play with ten men almost throughout the second half after Edu Juanda was shown the red card for his foul on Phan Van Quyen in the 55th minute by referee Lee Young-chun of South Korea.

Indonesian coach Serghei Dubrovin was so disappointed by the result that he refused to talk to reporters after the match.

Instead, assistant coach Mundary Karya spoke at the media conference. He said that the team was disappointed by "bad refereeing", which had affected the players' performance.

"The players were disappointed by the refereeing which they say went against them. The players became confused and their game was affected," Mundary said.

Mundary rued the goal, saying that the players should not have lost their concentration. The Indonesian's defenders were distracted by the ball, leaving Thanh Binh unnoticed inside the penalty box to head home a cross.

"The team played better in the second half. Unfortunately, the red card spoilt the game," Mundary said.

Meanwhile, Vietnamese coach Alfred Riedl said he was satisfied with his players' performance.

Earlier, defending soccer champion Thailand thrashed Laos 6-0, with Sarayoot Chaikamdee firing four first-half goals. Thailand was held to a 1-1 tie with Vietnam in the opening round, while Laos lost 1-0 to Indonesia.

Thailand's coach Carlos Calvalho said the performance was an improvement on the opening match.

"I'm satisfied with the score today and I'll be preparing of the next match," he said. Thailand needs to beat Indonesia to ensure a place in the semifinals from Pool A.

In Group B, which is being played in Ho Chi Minh City, Malaysia and Myanmar qualified for the next stage after collecting six points each from two wins. Singapore and Cambodia were eliminated.