Syamer comes of age in AFF debut outing

Having played for Malaysia at the Asian Cup qualifiers, Syamer Kutty Abba put in a matured performance in Thursday's win over Cambodia.

Together with five other players in Syazwan Andik, Syahmi Safari, Akram Mahinan, Safawi Rasid and Mohamadou Sumareh - Syamer was among those who made his AFF Championship bow in the 0-1 win over Cambodia at the Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh.

There's no doubt that Syamer shone the brightest in that elect group, he was arguably even Malaysia's best performer on the night depsite goalscorer Norshahrul Idlan Talaha receiving the official man of the match award.

Played in central midfield alongside Akram, Syamer was a towering presence and his ability to read the play really came to the fore in the first half when he continually broke down Cambodia's attack and became the starting point of Malaysia's counter attack.

"The experience was good. Of course the first game was always going to be difficult. The pitch condition unsettled us and our game play wasn't that good but thankfully we won. The pitch was different from what we trained but we can't give any excuses for that. We tried our best to overcome it."

"First half I went forward more but after we took the lead, I stayed back to cover the defence. I still have to improve a lot and I'm not satisfied yet with my performance," he told Goal.

Syamer made his first international bow for the senior side back in October of 2017 when he appeared in the starting line-up of the away match at Hong Kong, with Eduardo Vingada the still the head coach then.

Known to be a slow starter in games but has the knack to grow within the game, Syamer's move to Johor Darul Ta'zim before the start of the 2018 season perhaps did not quite pan out the way he would have liked but is now making a big claim to being one of the first names on Tan Cheng Hoe's XI.

There's a sense of maturity in his game now and instead of trying too much fancy footwork, Syamer is trying to keep it simple and as such, made him a more efficient player in the heart of the team. With Laos to come on Monday, one name that is expected to remain in the team sheet will be this Penang-born midfielder.


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