| JAKARTA (1 Oct 2008) – The Indonesia national Under-16 team did not have the best of preparation for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Under-16 Championship when they succumbed to a 3-0 defeat to Saudi Arabia in a friendly.
Both Indonesia and Saudi Arabia are currently in Uzbekistan for the AFC U16 meet and the friendly was their final tune-up match ahead of the tournament proper due to kick-off on 4 Oct 2008.
Against physically superior side from the Middle East, the Indonesian youth side were undeterred and created several chances for themselves.
But as it were in the AFF U16 meet which was held in Jakarta earlier, Indonesia just could not convert those chances and which seems to add to their frustration.
Perhaps their best chance in the first half came off Fery Bayu, but his timely header was blocked by the Saudi keeper.
After holding off their opponents for long periods, Indonesia finally conceded the first goal in the 39th minute for the score to stand at 1-0 in favour of Saudi Arabia at the break.
With the weather taking a dip in the second half, the Indonesia lads had difficulty adjusting to the new conditions and this resulted in them losing aggression as well tempo.
And three minutes after the restart, Saudi went further ahead before wrapping up the match up two minutes to the end for the final scoreline.
“It was a generally good match where there was a spirited performance from the lads and wanting to do better. We know where we stand at this time and we know what we must do before our first game in the competition,” said Yeyen Tumena, the assistant coach for Indonesia.
Apart from Indonesia who are in Group B and who will open their campaign against Syria, the other Asean countries taking part in this AFC U16 meet are Singapore (in Group A) and Malaysia (in Group D).