SURABAYA (5 Aug 2018) – Malaysia coasted past Singapore 4-0 as they look to their final match against Laos in two days for the decisive spot into the next round of the AFF Under-16 Championship here at the Joko Samudro Stadium.
With Thailand already booking their place in the semi-finals and where a win over Laos later tonight should cement their place as group winners, the Malaysians needed the win against Singapore to ensure a fighting chance for progression.
And while the Malaysians might not be impressive, it was at least a marked improvement from their last game against Brunei.
“The early goal gave the team confidence but their performance was not very good,” said Malaysian head coach Raja Azlan Shah.
“That was probably because they needed to conserve their energy for their next game (against Laos) which is more important.
With Singapore looking lethargic, the Malaysians played with full of confidence as they passed the ball around before slotting in the lead after just eight minutes through Aliff Daniel Abdul Aziz.
They then added their second goal of the game off Harith Naem Jaineh in the 33rd minute before adding two more goals after the break off Muhammad Fahmi Daniel Mohd Zaaim in the 46th minute and then an own goal from Singapore’s Muhammad Ryaan Sanizal ten minutes later.
From then on, the Malaysians were just passing the ball around with little commitment to go forward as Singapore struggled to get the ball into their opponent’s box.
“Our sense of anticipation was very poor and this allowed the Malaysians to get behind our defenders,” said Singapore head coach Ryo Shigaki.
“Our biggest problem is the lack of experience and this is something which we need to work on.”