Southeast Asia

Defending Champions Thailand Smash Malaysia to Book AFF Final Spot

Defending AFF Championship winners Thailand managed to overturn their semifinal tie in some style after thrashing Malaysia 3-0 at the Thammasat Stadium in Pathum Thani Province in Tuesday’s semifinal second leg, ensuring that their hopes of defending their title remain well and truly alive.

Trailing 1-0 from January 7th’s first leg, many expect Thailand to turn things around in the second leg at the Thammasat and the Changsuek duly fulfil expectations in some style.

Teerasil Dangda wiped out the Harimau Malaya‘s advantage in the 19th minute, heading in a Theerathon Bunmathan cross past Syihan Hazmi in the Malaysia goal to draw the tie level on aggregate.

A dominant Thailand then doubled their lead ten minutes into the second half. Ekanit Panya managed to find Bordin Phala, who swept home past Hazmi.

Thailand’s win was confirmed in the 71st minute after substitute Adisak Kraisorn – himself set to play in Malaysia for Terengganu FC in the 2023 season – latched onto his own deflected shot to fire home the Changsuek‘s third goal of the game.

Malaysia tried their best in chasing the game by throwing in the likes of Safawi Rasid and Sergio Ezequiel Aguero, but it was too little too late as Thailand hang on to claim their ticket to this year’s AFF Championship final.

The Changsuek will face off against Vietnam in the final, with the first leg set to be played on January 13th at the My Dinh National Stadium in Hanoi.