Mcmenemy puts defeat to Malaysia down to heavy legs

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Alvino Hanafi
Having largely been dominant in the first half, Indonesia gave way in the second and McMenemy rues the heavy toll on his players leading to this game.

Going into the match, Simon McMenemy spoke at length about understanding the fixture between Indonesia and Malaysia meant for so many people. Having seen his side taken the lead not once but twice in the match, only to go away without a single point right at the death does not make for good reading.

Twice Alberto Goncalves put the ball past Farizal Marlias but both times Malaysia came back with the right response to not only put the Indonesian team under pressure but also added to the umbrage of those in stands which ultimately led to the crowd trouble in the second half.

McMenemy was honest in his view on the game particularly about the home fans but was at pains to explain how detrimental the domestic fixtures have been on his team as his side struggled to keep up with Malaysia towards the end of the match.

"Difficult one to take. Difficult one to swallow. Not going to pretend this doesn’t hurt. We did well in the first half. Pressure put on by the away side, working us hard. Some gaps were taken advatange of. 15-20 minutes to go, our players were tired. Last five minutes we were tired and that cost us. Our boys are very deflated.

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"It’s (crowd trouble) something that I cannot control. I’m not going to say that the incident that went on didn’t disrupt the game. For both sides, it was an inconvenience. The supporters in this country is one of the best in the world but occasionally they are one of the worst thing in football as well," he said in the post-match press conference.

The Indonesian head coach had already devised a clever plan to play on the last line of Malaysia's defence hoping to take advantage of the high defensive line employed by the visitors. Many a times, the tactics worked as Indonesia kept breaking the offside trap time after time but the final pass or shot left a lot to be desired.

It will be tough for the Scot to pick his players up after this 2-3 defeat at the hands of their old rivals on home soil but he's left without a choice but to push on. Thailand are the next visitors on September 10 and on paper, are bound to provide an even tougher challenge to McMenemy than Malaysia did.

 

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