Previously, the referee of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2020 was under scrutiny by netizens as he made many questionable decisions during the semi-final match between Singapore and Indonesia.
Some say he was a spy from Indonesia while others called him the “12th player of Indonesia”.
With such verdicts, it seems like Indonesia will be taking this year’s win, right? No, for Indonesia are the bridesmaids once again.
Thailand Won AFF Suzuki Cup for the Sixth Time
Reeling in their sixth Asean Football Federation (AFF) Championship win, Thailand has been crowned kings again. In the second leg of the AFF Suzuki Cup, Thailand was held to a 2-2 draw by Indonesia before their 6-2 aggregate victory.
In the first leg, The War Elephants (Thailand) thrashed The Garuda (Indonesia) 4-0 in their first leg on Wednesday (29 Dec 2021), which means a draw would’ve sufficed for them to win the tournament.
But they didn’t park an elephant between their goal posts.
Indonesia, being so close to the finishing line, drew first blood in the second leg through a low shot from outside the box by midfielder Ricky Kambuaya.
The ball sneaked through the legs of the defender and the hands of the goalkeeper.
At the end of the first half, Teerasil Dangda tried to score a goal for Thailand but he squandered it as his right-footed attempt from the centre of the box went over the bar.
In the 54th minute, substitute Adisak pounced on a loose ball after Nadeo had parried Bordin Phala’s shot and rifled the ball into the net.
Two minutes later, Sarach Yooyen pounce from the edge of the box as the Indonesians failed to clear the lines.
Eventually, Thailand closed out the remaining minutes and regain its position as the champions.
After the win, coach Alexandra Polking called this achievement a ‘special’ one and a New Year gift for all the people in Thailand after a difficult year.
This win also entitled them to a winners’ cheque of US$300,000 (S$405,000).
Despite the win, the team will still be hustling with the aim of conquering the World Cup qualifiers or Asian Cup qualifiers next.
While it is Thailand’s sixth win, this is also Indonesia’s sixth time being runner ups.
4 Indonesia Players Out of Final
Indonesia also had a disadvantage as four of its players were ruled out of the second leg for they were found to have breached COVID-19 safety rules.
These four players left their hotel one evening for around two hours in breach of their controlled itinerary. They went out of purchase essentials like shampoo and soap which ran out during their month-long stay.
As a result of the breach, they did not participate in the match.
To protect everyone’s health, team members and match officials can only travel between their assigned hotels, training venues and competition venues. They are not allowed to travel beyond this itinerary.
Oh, and yes, lest you’ve forgotten, they were in Singapore when they breached the rules, so maybe MOH would be paying them a visit, too.
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Featured Image: Facebook (AFF Suzuki Cup)
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