Southeast Asia Indonesia

PSS Stun Persebaya to Seal Group C Top Spot

The final matches of the 2021 Menpora Cup group stage were played out on Wednesday, with four teams vying to accompany Persebaya Surabaya out of Group C and into the quarterfinals. With Madura United having played all four of their group matches, they must rely on a favorable result from Matchweek 5 to qualify out of their group, with the last matches of the Menpora Cup group stages seeing Persik Kediri and Persela Lamongan facing-off against one another at the Si Jalak Harupat Stadium in the early kick-off before PS Sleman took on Persebaya at the same venue in the late match. 

Unfortunately for Madura United, both Persik and Persela played out a 2-2 draw in the early match, that saw Andri Ibo sealing a solitary point for the Macan Putih with a late penalty, before PSS sealed the fates of their three rivals after beating Persebaya in the late kick-off. This meant that the Super Elja will accompany Persebaya into the Menpora Cup quarterfinal, as Group C winners no less.

The battle between PSS and Persebaya was a closely-fought contest. The first half ended in a goalless stalemate, however it’s still action-packed nonetheless as both sides carved out excellent opportunities to take the lead.

PSS received the advantage in the 47th minute, two minutes into the second half. Arsyad Yusgiantoro was fouled within the box by Persebaya captain Rizky Ridho as he tested the Bajul Ijo goalkeeper Ernando Ali with a shot, prompting the referee to award a penalty for the Super Elja. Irfan Bachdim managed to beat Ali with a well-taken penalty, earning the all-important lead for PSS.

The two teams then once again exchanged attacks after Irfan’s opener, with Marselino Ferdinan testing Ega Rizky in the PSS goal from some distance in the 54th minute before Arsyad saw his shot going above Ali’s goal in the 62nd minute. In the end no further goals were scored and thanks to the 1-0 win PSS received the right to accompany Persebaya into the Menpora Cup quarterfinal, advancing as Group C winners as the Super Elja has a better goal difference record compared to the Bajul Ijo.

With the group stages all done and dusted, the Menpora Cup continues to its knockout rounds, with Group A winners PSIS Semarang taking on Group B runners-up PSM Makassar at the Kanjuruhan Stadium in the first quarterfinal match on Friday evening.