| PHNOM PENH (August 22, 2007) – Myanmar and Singapore battled to a lively 3-3 draw in the second match in Group B of the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Under-17 Championship here at the National Olympic Stadium.
In front of more than 7,000 spectators, it was Singapore who took the lead in the 18th minute through Mohd Fazli Yayaha before Myanmar scored with two minutes remaining to the break with a header from Kaung Htet Aung.
Myanmar then added two further goals in the second half through Thet Naing (47th) and Kyi Linn (59th) before Singapore replied off Mohd Alqaasimy Abdul Rahman (66th) and Stanely Ng (74th) for both teams to share points.
“The players do not have a lot of international match experience and it was due to the mistakes of the defenders that we conceded the two goals when we were two goals in front,” said Myanmar head coach U Khin Maung Tint.
“But the game this afternoon was good and exciting where now we have to look to win our remaining two matches (against Laos and Vietnam) to give us a place in the next round.”
The early exchange was restricted mostly to the midfield as Myanmar adjusted to the heat of the afternoon against a Singapore side which had already played two days earlier (in the 2-0 loss to Vietnam).
And it was Myanmar’s failure to settle down early which resulted in the first goal for Singapore when Mohd Fazli blasted in a free kick which Myanmar keeper Kyaw Ko Ko failed to stop as it trickled into goal.
A goal down, Myanmar pushed forward in search of the equaliser and in the 43rd minute Zaw Lin Htet floated in a cross into the Singapore box for Kaung Htet Aung to head in the equaliser.
That goal roused the Myanmar lads to be even more aggressive after the breather and barely two minutes later, a moment of pure individual trickery from Kyi Linn as he dribbled past three Singapore defenders before playing the ball short to the waiting Thet Naung to slam the ball home.
A minute to the hour mark saw Kyi Linn giving Myanmar a two-goal advantage when he blasted in from the edge of the Singapore box.
Under pressure, Singapore made a few substitutions to give more options into their attack and in the 66th minute a rifling shot from Mohd Alqaasimy from 20metres out saw the score at 3-2 to the advantage of Myanmar.
In the 74th minute, Stanely prevented Myanmar from picking up their first three points of the competition when he capitalised on a defensive mistake from Naing Soe Wai to slam home the equaliser.
“I am happy with the performance but not the draw,” said Singapore head coach Abdullah Mohd Noor.
“It was a good fight back from the players and the fans were treated to an afternoon of entertaining football. We want to win against Laos (their next opponent) but we have to respect them nonetheless.”
GROUP B STANDING
1. VIETNAM 3pts (+2); 2. MYANMAR 1pt (0); 3. SINGAPORE 1pt (-2); 4. LAOS BRUNEI (No matches played yet).
PIC: SINGAPORE (in blue) against MYANMAR (in red)