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Malaysia’s quest for semi-final spot in AFF Suzuki Cup dims after loss to Vietnam

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by November 23, 2016 General

Malaysia’s quest for semi-final spot in AFF Suzuki Cup dims after loss to Vietnam

Harimau Malaysia players, Mohd Safee Sali (right) and Norshahrul Idlan Talaha trained as part of the preparation for the incoming AFF Suzuki Cup 2017 at Wisma FAM in Petaling Jaya November 7, 2016. Malaysia lost to Vietnam in the AFF Suzuki Cup match today. — Bernama picHarimau Malaysia players, Mohd Safee Sali (right) and Norshahrul Idlan Talaha trained as part of the preparation for the incoming AFF Suzuki Cup 2017 at Wisma FAM in Petaling Jaya November 7, 2016. Malaysia lost to Vietnam in the AFF Suzuki Cup match today. — Bernama picYANGON, Nov 23 — Malaysia’s quest for a semi-final spot dimmed after losing 0-1 to Vietnam in a Group B match of AFF Suzuki Cup at Thuwunna Stadium here, today.

Instead, Vietnam’s second straight win took the Golden Stars to the semi-final, the second team to qualify after cup holders Thailand.

Thailand became the first team to qualify for the semi-final after beating Singapore 1-0 at Philippine Sports Stadium in Manila, yesterday.

Malaysia must beat co-hosts, Myanmar in the same venue on Saturday to keep their semi-final hopes alive.

Vietnam will complete their group B match against Cambodia at Wunna Theikdi Stadium in Naypyitaw on Saturday.

The match in Yangon got off to a blistering start with Vietnam launching a series of raids led by twin strikers Le Cong Vinh and Nguyen Van Quyet.

However, the Malaysian defence led by Muhd Shahrom Abdul Kalam managed to soak up the Vietnam pressure.

The Malaysian Tigers best chance fell to striker Ahmad Hazwan Bakri in the 42nd minute but his weak shot sailed straight into the arms of Vietnam goalkeeper, Tran Nguyen Manh. The first half ended 0-0.

After the break, Vietnam rained the Malaysian goal with several raids but they found goalkeeper Khairul Fahmi Che Mat was in his element.

Malaysia came close to scoring in the 66th minute but Ahmad Hazwan’s powerful shot form inside the penalty box was saved by goalkeeper Nguyen Manh.

Vietnam’s efforts paid off when substitute, Nguyen Trong Hoang scored in the 79th minute as the Malaysian defence was trying to clear the ball from the penalty box.

Both teams then tried hard to find the net but failed. The 1-0 score remained until the end of the match. — Bernama

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