| JAKARTA (Oct 31, 2007) – Indonesia failed to capitalise on their lead in the crucial match of Group F of the AFC Under-16 qualifiers last night when they fell 2-1 to Japan at the Stadion Lebak Bulus in Jakarta.
In front of more than 6,000 screaming fans, Indonesia were all action from the very first whistle and the early pressure bore the early fruit when the home team were awarded with a penalty in 18th minute following a foul on Alan Marta inside the box.
Reffa Money blasted the ball to the right to beat Japan keeper Eisuke Fujusima for the lead.
However, the jubilation lasted only a mere two minutes for Indonesia when off a free kick from the left, Japanese striker Takuto Haraguchi beat his marker before slamming home past Indonesia’s Tri Windu Anggono for the well-deserved equaliser.
In the 29th minute, Japan took the lead for the first in the game off a combination play from outside the Indonesian penalty box for Takashi Usami to stab the ball in.
“We played well in the first half but the team lost their sense of belief when they were trailing,” said Indonesian head coach Subangkit, whose team will be without the influential Muhammad Fandy in their next match after being red-carded in the game against Japan.
“But we are still confident of making the next round where we need only to beat Vietnam and Cambodia next.”
IN AN EARLIER MATCH, Cambodia picked up only their second point of the qualifiers when they held Hong Kong to a 1-1 draw.
A sixth minute strike from striker Pak Lun Fong gave Hong Kong the lead but Cambodia were not too far behind with the equalizer when Mony Udom Prark unleashed a stiff grounder in the 36th minute.
FIXTURES AND RESULTS
Oct 24: JAPAN 2 LAOS 0/ VIETNAM 1 CAMBODIA 1
Oct 26: HONG KONG 0 INDONESIA 1/ CAMBODIA 0 JAPAN 7
Oct 28: VIETNAM 0 HONG KONG 0/ INDONESIA 1 LAOS 0
Oct 30: CAMBODIA 1 HONG KONG 1/ JAPAN 2 INDONESIA 1
Nov 1: Laos vs Vietnam, Hong Kong vs Japan
Nov 3: Indonesia vs Vietnam, Laos vs Cambodia
Nov 5: Japan vs Vietnam, Laos vs Hong Kong, Cambodia vs Indonesia
GROUP F STANDINGS (after three matches)
1. JAPAN 9pts
2. INDONESIA 6pts
3. VIETNAM 2pts
4. HONG KONG 2pts
5. CAMBODIA 2pts
6. LAOS 0pt