Malaysia Win AFF Suzuki Cup 2010

Malaysia beat Indonesia 4-2 on aggregate to lift AFF Suzuki Cup 2010 in the final at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium in Jakarta Wednesday night local time. The win is Malaysia's first in the AFF Suzuki Cup after 14 years. Prior to this, Malaysia only made the AFF Cup final once, in 1996 when it was called Tiger Cup, losing 0-1 to Thailand.

Striker Mohd Safee Mohd Sali made good his promise when he scored in the 53rd min in front of Indonesian supporters which packed the stadium. Malaysia arrived in Jakarta with a three goal cushion after trouncing Indonesia 3-0 in the first leg final at National Stadium in Bukit Jalil. Profilic striker Safee also emerged as highest goalscorer with five goals.

Watched by 70,000 supporters, Malaysia and Indonesia started the game cautiously. Malaysian Goalkeeper Khairul Fahmi Che Mat's prowess was tested after referee Peter Daniel Green of Australia gifted Indonesia a penalty after the ball hit the hand of Mohd Sabre Mat Abu. Indonesian skipper Firman Utina's weak low shot was saved by Khairul Fahmi. The first half ended goaless.

Malaysia drew first blood when Mohd Safee latched to a cross from Norshahrul Idlan Talaha to put "Harimau Malaya" 1-0 in the 53rd min. Stung by the goal, Indonesia mounted several raids looking for the elusive equaliser. They were rewarded when Mohammad Nasuha scored in the 71st min after Khairul Fahmi pushed out an attempt by Ahmad Bustomi. Indonesia's second goal was gifted by Mohamad Muslim Ahmad whose header sailed into the Malaysian net in the 87th min.

"This is the greatest night in Malaysian football. The young team had done us proud and we must build upon this success to propel Malaysian football to greater hights. This is to ensure what we achieved tonight is not a fleeting one but the begining of a turn around in our football history of major propotion," said Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who declared Friday, Dec 31, as a public holiday in recognition of Malaysian's AFF-Suzuki Cup triumph.

Source: Bernama

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