Alhamdulillah, Malaysia has defended the gold medal for football event that we won two years ago in Laos. I’m pretty sure many celebrated and will have a very good night sleep. One of them will be me, InsyaAllah.
It was a very thrilling match, with Indonesia U-23 scored first from a corner set piece. For some, it was a wake up call for the Harimau Muda players and for that I do agree. The Malaysian players started to control the game and not succumb to such pressure by Indonesian players and supporters.
Thank God that the boys managed to pull one back before half time. A good vital goal that proves that our boys can play under such enormous pressure. For the rest of the game, there were many moments of heart pumping situation, that if the spectators feeling like having heart attacks, just imagine the load of the boys’ heart pumped blood and oxygen through their veins. It could be more, and worse, our players might have collapse not because of fatigue, but heart stopping moments.
The final match was a sum up of what the boys have gone through for the past few days. They have survived the group of death challenge by a 0-0 draw against Singapore, won agaisnt Thailand 2-1, Cambodia (4-1) and unexpectedly beat Indonesia 1-0 at the final group match to earn the boys a match against Myanmar, and not Vietnam.
A few lessons that we can learn from the final game.
One thing for sure, the boys showed us once again there are still hope in Malaysian football. The grey clouds started to move away and moving away. The boys need to keep improving, and for us, Malaysians, to support them all the way. Yes, we may criticize, but do it in a positive manner. For example, yes, Fakri given a bad performance during the final and to add his worse night, he missed a penalty. But who doesn’t? Even Cristiano Ronaldo had his bad night on personal performance, but Manchester United still won the Champions League that night (through penalty shoot out too!).
To Fakri, please take tonight’s match as a lesson and build up your performance to a better level.
Second lesson that we can take is, it has showed us, despite whatever political ideologies you may have, we are still able to unite as Malaysians. Even though I noticed through twitters that PR supporters were not that fond of commenting on football before and during the game as much as BN supporters, they still congratulate the team for winning the gold medal, including TG Nik Aziz.
Third lesson – be a good host as any wrong doing may haunt you on the spot. Indonesians has shown us of how unsporting spirit they could be. They have chanted Malaysian contingent with awful and disrespect words. They have mistreated our contingent. However, last night, they deserve to hear “Negaraku” to be played in Gelora Bung Karno. For me, God has paid “cash” and showed to us how painful it can be if you treat your guest bad, and they beat you in your face. To my fellow Indonesian friends, take tonight incident as a lesson. Please be a good host.
As a summary, congratulations Harimau Muda for winning and retaining the gold medal. Celebrate and cherish the moment, but do keep on improving. We do hope your next match in few days’ time can give us hope we can see you guys go further and do better.
Question on the street: How do you rate the match?