In the opening match of the tournament Indonesia managed to thump rivals The Philippines 3-0, but there was much more to this match than the score suggests.
Indonesia though will no doubt be happy about the result and barring a miracle, one would expect them to progress from the group stages.
First-Half – Indonesia 1 Philippines 0
Despite being clear favorites and indeed the best supported of the two sides, Indonesia not only started slowly, but were fully held back by the Philippines, who had more than one chance to score themselves.
The deadlock was though broken in the dying seconds of the first-half; when Marselino slotted home easily.
Second-Half – Indonesia 3 Philippines 0
Indonesia came out battling in the second-half, but do as they may they could not get anything past the Philippines, who at times looked like they might even grab an equalizer. In the end though the quality of the favourites was to win out, with Jauhan scoring a great goal in the 89th minute.
The game was then ended almost immediately after the restart with Indonesia going on last-ditch attack from where Fajar was put clean on goal and duly slotted home the final nail in the coffin. The goals might have come late, but Indonesia 3 Philippines 0 was probbaly a pretty result.
What does it mean?
For Indonesia it means the victory that they wanted and indeed needed, and they remain clear group favorites to win the group. For the Philippines it means their next game against Cambodia is a do, or die one, with one suspected the latter of the two.
Indonesia though might go on to rue the fact that they did not score more during this match, particularly if the group does go down to the wire.
The Philippines will next take on Cambodia on May 2nd.
Indonesia will next play Myanmar on May 4th.
This article is adapted from BPVE, (https://bpve.com/) reported and edited from the great team – Cambodia Sports Review. (https://www.cambodiasportsreview.com/)
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