Monday, September 19, 2011

AFF Under-19 : Malaysia Advance Into Semi Final

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 -- Harimau Muda B took the runners-up spot in Group A when they blasted the Philippines 6-0 in the final group match of the AFF Under-19 Championship 2011 that was played yesterday at the Youth Training Centre, Yangon.

According to Asean Football Federation website, Malaysia needed at least a draw to ensure that they advance into the semi-finals ahead of Cambodia.

They came out with all guns blazing to take a comfortable 4-0 lead at the break.

Malaysia added two more goals in the second half to ensure their passage into the next round behind group winners Thailand.

Chief coach of Malaysia Ismail Ibrahim was satisfied with the performance, but cautioned: "Against Vietnam, it will be a totally different game, and we will have to strategise for it."

"I think the players have learnt their lesson from the loss to Thailand which has made them more determined to do better against a side like Vietnam in the semi-finals," he said.

As early as the second minute, Harimau Muda B were in front when striker Muhammad Akmal Ishak kneed the ball past Philippines goalkeeper Nicholas O'Donnell off a free kick from Muhammad Shafiq Azman.

Akmal doubled Malaysia's lead with his second goal of the afternoon off a cross from Mohamad Ridzuan Abdunloh Pula with an exquisite back flick.

The Philippines fell further behind in the 18 minute off an own goal from Joseph Bellezon before the Malaysians wrapped up the first half with the fourth goal on 38 minutes off Mohamad Syafiq.

The chief coach of the Philippines, Maor Rozen, said the gap between the Philipines and Malaysia and Thailand is obvious.

"I cannot ask more from my players as they have given a hundred per cent in this game.

"This tournament has given a good experience to this set of players and they will learn for sure," he said

The remainder of Malaysia's goals were scored by Mohamad Ridzuan in the 51st minute and Muhammad Akram Mahinan in the 60th minute.

-- BERNAMA

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