Football

Published: Wednesday December 18, 2013 MYT 9:38:00 PM
Updated: Wednesday December 18, 2013 MYT 10:18:49 PM

Kim Swee warns players to beware wounded Indonesians

Indonesian Andik Vermansyah (right) in a file photo. He will be a threat to Malaysia when the two teams meet in the semi-final on Dec 19, 2013.

Indonesian Andik Vermansyah (right) in a file photo. He will be a threat to Malaysia when the two teams meet in the semi-final on Dec 19, 2013.

NAYPYITAW: It's a repeat of the 2011 SEA Games final and national Under-23 coach Datuk Ong Kim Swee has issued a warning to his men: Beware the wounded Indonesians.

Kim Swee knows that Indonesia will be bent on avenging their defeat by Malaysia in the final of the 2011 SEA Games in Jakarta.

The Indonesians are clearly still smarting from that painful loss. Malaysia won 4-3 on penalties after both teams were tied at 1-1 in regulation time at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, which was packed to the brim with the home fans.

On paper, Malaysia look superior, especially after extending their unbeaten run in the SEA Games football competition to 14 matches en route to beating Vietnam 2-1 on Tuesday.

Adding spice to Thursday’s semi-final clash will be the fact that both teams will be fielding several players who had featured in the 2011 final.

Indonesia have four players from that losing team – goalkeeper Kurnia Meiga, winger Andik Vermansyah, midfielder Egi Melgiansyah and defender Diego Michiels.

Malaysia will have seven players – A. Thamil Arasu, Mohd Fadhli Shas, Mohd Irfan Fazail, Izzaq Faris Ramlan, Mohd Izham Tarmizi, Mohd Zubir Azmi and Mohd Nazmi Faiz Mansor.

There will be no love lost when these two teams meet on Thursday.

And Kim Swee admitted that their achievement two years ago counts for nothing this time.

He also warned his men to be wary of the threat posed by Andik and Diego.

“We can’t afford to look down on Indonesia. They have beaten hosts Myanmar and will be confident against us,” said Kim Swee after the team’s training session at the Golden Guest Hotel in Nyapyitaw on Wednesday.

“They will also be looking for revenge ... they will be motivated and we need to raise our game.

“Andik and Diego will be big threats ... they are good players and can change the outcome of a match.”

Malaysia and Indonesia will be without K. Reuben (rightback) and midfielder Dedi Kusnandar respectively due to a one-match suspension.

“We will miss Reuben but we have Nasir (Basharuddin) and Mohd Azrif Nasrulhaq Badrul Hisham who can play at rightback,” said Kim Swee.

“We were very disciplined in the last two games. The players also had showed good fighting spirit, but they will have to go the extra mile in the semi-final.

“I will tweak the line-up a bit due to the suspension and injuries.”

Tags / Keywords: football, semi-final, SEA Games, Malaysia, Indonesia, Ong Kim Swee, Myanmar, Naypyitaw, Nyapidaw

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