Football Tribe Malaysia
Malaysia 0 – 1 Cambodia
Indonesia 2 – 2 Malaysia (Nik Akif Syahiran, Hadi Fayyadh)
Strengths: Malaysia has strength in both defense and attacks. Dominic Tan, alongside partner Ariff Ar-Rasyid, made it difficult for Indonesia to penetrate the Malaysian goal. However, despite going two goals in a game with Indonesia, Malaysia’s attack was quick to find goals when they needed it most. As a result, Nik Akif and Hadi Fayyadh rescued a point to keep Malaysia’s qualification hopes alive.
Weaknesses: Playing on a synthetic pitch was hard for Ong Kim Swee’s men. It seemed difficult for them to control the ball and arrange the match. Players should be quicker to familiarize themselves with the synthetic field as this is one of the challenges for them. Apart from that, losing some of the key players is a tough challenge for coach Swee, as he needed to put some inexperienced players in the starting lineup. This seems to have worsened the chemistry amongst the side.
Standout Performer – Dominic Tan
The Johor Darul Ta’zim defender has established himself as a reliable player. He has the ability to read the game quickly and is always ready to defend. The 21-year-old has a bright future ahead of him in the senior squad.