| HUE (23 Sept 2008) – Thailand made the semi-finals of the U21 International Thanh Nien Cup when they beat Malaysia 4-1 at the Tu Do Stadium in the central town of Hue.
“I am pleased with the result,” said Kawin Kachendecha, the head coach for Thailand.
“We must beat Vietnam to top Group A and avoid Iran in the semis. We want to advance further in the competition and hope to be in the final.”
The loss for Malaysia, who were represented by their young Under-19 squad, was their second following their 4-2 defeat at the hands of hosts Vietnam yesterday.
But the Malaysians were a lot more composed in the opening half of the game when they scored the lead off Thamil Arasu in the 11th minute.
The Thais then took control of the midfield and seven minutes later, they scored the equaliser when Rachanon Sirnok headed in the cross from Theerathon Bunmathan.
The Malaysian defence stood firm for much of the rest of the game until the 77th minute when Nirunrit Jaroensuk rifled in a shot from some way out to put Thailand 2-1 in front.
The Thais then scored twice more towards the end of the game off
With the win, Thailand and Vietnam will fight it out tomorrow to decide the group champions as Malaysia head home.
“We lost because my players couldn’t control the midfield. However, we can learn a lot from this competition,” said K.Rajagopal, the head coach for Malaysia.