2022 World Cup qualifier Malaysia chase another win while Indonesia aim to redeem battered pride
2022 World Cup qualifier: Malaysia chase another win while Indonesia aim to redeem battered pride
Harimau Malaya players are seen during their practice session ahead of their World Cup 2022/Asian Cup 2023 qualifier match against Indonesia at the Bukit Jalil stadium November 18, 2019. – Bernama pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 18 – The clash between two traditional rivals – Malaysia and Indonesia – in the 2022 World Cup/Asia 2023 World Cup qualifiers at Bukit Jalil National Stadium tomorrow night, is expected to feature another epic battle as both teams look to succeed in their respective missions.
The Harimau Malaya squad are determined to continue their excellent record on home turf to advance to the 2023 Asian Cup finals in China, while the Red and White Garuda team come to Kuala Lumpur on a mission to redeem themselves, following their four consecutive defeats in this campaign.
Malaysia have just come off a 1-0 win against the world ranked 116th, Tajikistan, in a friendly on November 9, before beating five-time AFF Suzuki Cup champions Thailand 2-1 at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, five days later.
Indonesia, on the other hand, have faced four consecutive defeats, namely to 2-3 to Malaysia, Thailand (0-3) the United Arab Emirates (UAE) (0-5) and Group G leaders, Vietnam (1-3).
However, Malaysia’s head coach Tan Cheng Hoe is not taking anything for granted against Indonesia, which is currently being led by interim coach Yeyen Tumena following the sacking of Scotland-born coach Simon McMenemy by the Indonesian Football Association recently.
“Tomorrow’s game will be different from the earlier (away) game as Indonesia is bringing on some new players, as well as a new coach, and looking at their decision to come to Malaysia early (prior to matchday), it proves they are serious about the game,” he said during the pre-match press conference today.
The all-time record between the two teams favours Indonesia, with 39 wins, compared to Malaysia’s 36 wins, while there have been 21 draws.
However, in terms of current performance, the advantage lies with the Harimau Malaya squad, who have got quite a few wins under the belt, with the motivation to add another victory on their own turf.
The presence of thousands of home supporters at the stadium tomorrow night will surely provide a shot in the arm for the national squad, but the Indonesian players are no strangers to playing in stadiums packed with opposing fans, especially in their domestic league.
Whatever the outcome, one thing all spectators want to see is their team giving their all till the end.
National football legend Datuk Mokhtar Dahari had once said that “every team has to show the best performance in order to attract the spectators to the stadium. It must be worth the price of the ticket paid. If they play like trash, no one will want to watch it – even for free! “.
Malaysia currently sit in fourth place in Group G with six points, while Indonesia have failed to earn any points after four games.
After the match against Indonesia, Malaysia is scheduled to face the UAE in Dubai on March 26, 2020, Vietnam at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium on March 31, 2020, and the final one against Thailand in Bangkok, on June 9, 2020. – Bernama