HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam are out of the AFF U19 Youth Championship after they were beaten by three goals to nil against Malaysia in Wednesday's semi-final in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Việt Nam entered the game as favourites for the regional title so the exit has come as a shock to many supporters.
In the first 15 minutes, Malaysia goalkeeper Syahmi Adib was tested with consecutive corner kicks and free kicks.
The Malayan young tigers gradually escaped from Việt Nam's shadow and suddenly opened the scoring in the 26th minute with their first shot on-target.
Hà Châu Phi in an attempt to stop Malaysian attack misplaced his clearance and sent the ball to Adam Farhan Mohd Faizal whose shot beat goalkeeper Cao Văn Bình.
Việt Nam immediately had a chance to hit back. Hà Văn Trường gave a ball to Nguyễn Quốc Việt who headed well but was denied by Adib.
The lead pushed Malaysia who had more attacks and nearly doubled the score in the last minute of the first half.
Faizal broke from Việt Nam's right wing and entered the penalty area but his close-range effort was punched away by Bình.
Coach Đinh Thế Nam made all five changes in the second half with a view to strengthening his midfield and front line.
Việt Nam set up their domination again with consecutive threatening chances 10 minutes into the second half.
Captain Khuất Văn Khang, striker Nguyễn Văn Trường and Quốc Việt made a number of shots when the ball went around Malaysian box. But all of their finishes could not beat the focused Malaysian defence.
Three minutes later, Khang had his chance from 20 metres from the goal but his straight shot was comfortably saved by Adib.
Quốc Việt also tried to beat Adib with a finish to his left corner but it went wide.
Malaysia did not have many opportunities but when they did get a good chance they converted it with ease.
Muhammad Haqimi Azim Rosli broke from Việt Nam's right wing sending a ball in the box to Muhammad Haiqal Haqeemi Hairi who tapped home from close range.
Two minutes before the end, defender Trịnh Hoàng Cảnh tried to stop a Malaysian attempt but he slipped and the ball fell to Mohammad Haykal Danish Mohd Haizon who also rounded the goalkeeper to score into the empty net.
A win for the young tiger was the second surprise that they made in this tournament after an unexpected 1-0 loss to Laos on July 11.
Malaysia will face the winner of the match between Thailand and Laos in the final on July 15. It is their second final in a row after their 2019 final when they lost to Australia in Việt Nam.
Việt Nam will vie for the third place with the loser of Thailand and Laos game. — VNS