Thailand won their sixth crown of the AFF Suzuki Cup when they beat Indonesia 6-2 on aggregate tonight to reclaim their status as the King of ASEAN football.
Following their comprehensive 4-0 win in FINAL 1, Thailand put up another stirring performance against a determined Indonesian side as the two clashed to a 2-2 draw in an engaging FINAL 2 at the National Stadium tonight.
“Yes we did it, we did it in a very special way. I have to thank Madam Pang (Nualphan Lamsam, Thailand’s team manager) for believing in me and also to the coaching staff and all the players, who did all the work throughout this tournament,” said Thailand head coach Alexandre Polking.
“I had always said that we need to grow during this tournament because of the lack of time we have in training together. We defended when we need to defend. Football is a great possibility to make people happy during these difficult times.”
Added midfielder Chanathip Songkrasin, who won his third Most Valuable Player award: “naturally, I am happy to win the title for the third time. But we worked hard for each other. Now all teams in the region have improved and the competition is getting harder and harder.”
With Thailand on a four-goal advantage from FINAL 1, it was always going to be a mountain to climb for Indonesia to stage a comeback.
But just eight minutes in, Indonesia gave themselves the best of start when midfielder Ricky Kambuaya fired in a stiff grounder that trickled off the hands of Thai keeper Siwarak Tedsungnoen and into goal.
The lead for Indonesia would last all the way into the second half as a three-minute blitz from Thailand saw them taking a 2-1 lead off goals from Adisak Kraisorn’s close-range finish in the 53rd minute and then Sarach Yooyen’s grounder three minutes later.
Ten minutes to the end, midfielder Egy Maulana Vikri fired Indonesia back on the level as the score then stayed all the way to the end for Thailand to pick up their record-breaking sixth ASEAN title.
“The lack of experience was obvious in the first half of the two-legged finals. But we will prepare better for the next edition. The next time, we will not be an outside chance but a contender,” said Indonesian head coach Shin Tae-yong.
“We are really lacking in the strikers’ position and this is one area which we need to improve on.”
Added Ricky Kambuaya, who won the Man of the Match award: “we did our best throughout this tournament and the coach taught me a lot about match planning.”
AFF SUZUKI CUP 2020
FINAL 2 – National Stadium
1 January 2022
Thailand 2 (6) vs Indonesia 2 (2)