SURABAYA (29 July 2018) – Hosts Indonesia made a thumping start to their campaign in Group A of the AFF Under-16 Championship when they thrashed the Philippines 8-0 in the only match at the Delta Sidoarjo Stadium as Myanmar survived Timor Leste 3-2 at the Joko Samudro Stadium.
With Vietnam having sidestepped Cambodia 1-0 in an earlier match, the onus was on the other big boys to deliver as both Indonesia and Myanmar marked their arrival into the meet in commanding fashion.
The crowd might not have been overwhelming at Sidoarjo but that did little to hamper the enthusiasm of the home team as an early goal from Mochammad Supriadi early in the second minute of play put Indonesia well on the way.
The fact that the remainder of the goals came from six different players would have given a certain sense of satisfaction to Indonesian head coach Fakhri Husaini.
“The players showed what we have worked on during training. And they capitalised on the set pieces. We were surprised by the attendance of at least 8,000 fans. That motivated us,” said Fakhri afterwards.
Indonesia’s other goals were scored by Komang Teguh Trisnanda in the 18th minute, Muhammad Fajar Rachman (32nd), Sutan Diego Zico (45th), Rendy Juliansyah (56th and 67th), David Maulana’s penalty in the 63rd minute and Amirudin Bagus Alfikri (72nd).
In the second match of the evening at the Joko Samudro Stadium, Myanmar had to survive some anxious moments before they were able to beat Timor Leste 3-2.
Myanmar battled all the way through the first half as Timor Leste relied more on the counter attacks for both teams to be on equal 0-0 footing after 40 minutes of play.
But just three minutes into the second half, Timor Leste sprang a surprise when captain Osorio Angelo Gusmao curled in a left-footed shot to beat Myanmar keeper Nay Lin Htet.
The lead was just to last four minutes as Khun Kyaw Zin Hein then made good off a corner before Myanmar grabbed the lead for the first time in the match through Aung Ko Oo power-laden freekick in the 61st minute that Marcio Das Dores failed to save.
Timor Leste then drew level in the 73rd minute with a header from Aldo Amaral as they attempt to steal at least one point from the tie.
However, Myanmar had other ideas as substitute Naing Htwe then fired in from close, making good on the hardwork from captain Yan Kyaw Soe.
On the other hand, a first-half penalty from midfielder Dinh Thanh Tring gave Vietnam a slim 1-0 win over Cambodia.
The defending champions just could not get the better of a well-defended Cambodian backline as although they created the chances, lanky striker Vo Nguyen Hoang and Co. just failed to make any of them count.
Playing under almost perfect weather condition here in the town of Gresik, both Vietnam and Cambodia played some intense attacking football much to the delight of the smattering of fans at the stand.
Nguyen Hoang could be faulted with most of the misses with an early 15th minute chance from a defensive mistake saw him lobbing the ball well over the oncoming Cambodian custodian Kong Pheaktra.
Cambodia replied with a wonderful strike off a tight angle from Wut Tola but Vietnam keeper Nguyen Duy Dung had just enough to parry the ball over for a futile corner.
A handball later saw Brunei referee Abdul Hakim Mohd Haidi pointing to the spot as Thanh Trung blasted the ball to the right for Kong to jump the other way.
That goal in the 36th minute was the only bright spark in the match as the second half saw both teams tried hard to get a clear shot in.
Cambodian Ean Pisey was clearly the best player on the pitch with his exquisite ball control and clever distribution.
However, their failure to get close enough to the Vietnam box meant that the score stayed all the way to the end.
29 July 2018 – Group A
Cambodia 0 Vietnam 1
Myanmar 3 Timor Leste 2
Indonesia 8 Philippines 0
30 July 2018 – Group B
All matches at the Joko Samudro Stadium
1500: Brunei DS vs Laos
1830: Thailand vs Malaysia