RI’s hopes dashed with 1-5 loss to Japan
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Indonesia’s hopes of advancing to the next stage suffered a cruel revere after they fell to a 1-5 humiliation against favorite Japan in a Group E qualifying match of the AFC Cup U-22 soccer championship in Pekanbaru on Thursday evening.
Coming from a 2-1 win over Macau but carrying a loss to Australia in earlier matches, the home team played an attacking game to boost their chances of qualifying.
But Japan appeared too strong for them, and the young Indonesian players ended up two goals down in the first half with the visiting team managing to hold off Indonesia’s offensive.
Watari and Kubo were constant threats on Muhammad Ridwan’s goal, both creating their best chances after 16 minutes of the game forcing Ridwan to exert himself to snuff out the danger.
Within the next three minutes, midfielder Hendra Andy Bayauw was in good position outside the penalty box but he fired too slow to threaten keeper Nakamura Kosuke.
Indonesian captain Andik Virmansyah sustained an injury and had to leave the field after some 20 minutes of the game. He was substituted by Bima Ragil Satria Rakasiwi.
Kubo contributed four goals for Japan in the 31st, 34th, 64th and 90th minutes, with Suzuki Ryuga scoring the last during injury time.
Indonesia got a consolation goal from the penalty box through Syaiful Indra Cahya in the 57th minute.
The defeat left Indonesia in fourth position. Singapore having jumped to third with 7 points after beating Macau 3-0.
The Singaporeans played an offensive game right from the start and achieved a flurry of goal chances. Their opponents put up a strong defense but it broke apart in the 27th minute through Muhammad Faris Bin Ramli.
They had to swallow the bitter pill a second time when the Singaporean squad launched a counterattack, courtesy of captain Muhammad Al-Qaasimy bin Abdul Rahman.
Singapore had the chance to add to the score sheet through a penalty kick after a Macau defender heavily tackled a Singaporean player inside the penalty box.
But Muhammed Aqhari bin Abdullah failed in the execution, with the ball passing over the net.
Several minutes before the end of the game, Aqhari redeemed his mistake. He beat Macau’s defender before firing the ball into Macau’s net with his right foot. The result left Macau winless in the tournament featuring six teams. Timor Leste has also yet to collect their first win after stumbling to another defeat, 0-3, this time to Australia.
The goals were scored by midfielder Luke Anthony O’Dea and Jake Barker-Daish.
O’Dea opened the scoring for the young Kangaroos five minutes before the end of the first half.
Barker-Daish doubled the lead in the 87th minute before nailing the third in injury time.