Who were the best players in the 2015 SEA Games? Who impressed the most during the tournament? Football Channel Asia carved up each position and formed a deadly 3-5-2 formation of this year’s competition into a workable starting XI.
GK: Kyaw Zin Phyo – Myanmar
The Myanmar goalkeeper was in inspired form throughout the group stage of the competition as he conceded four goals. The 21-year-old Magway shot-stopper guarded an impenetrable net against Thailand in the final game, and produced a string of stunning saves to distinguish himself as the best goalkeeper in the tournament despite his side failing to win the gold medal.
CB: Que Ngoc Hai – Vietnam
The young defender was the driving force behind many of his side’s incisive counter-attacks as he brought the ball out of defence with invention and pace as well as his great vision and strength in the tackle to build a strong defensive line. The 22-year-old Song Lam Nghe An man showed why he is so revered within the Vietnam ranks, and was a huge part of Toshiya Miura’s side’s during the tournament.
CB: Artit Daosawang – Thailand
The Muangthong United defender was the rock in the heart of his side’s defence as the Young War Elephants retained their gold medals. Artit strung together four heroic displays and was at his commanding best throughout, winning seemingly every header and leading the Thai back line with efficiency and organisation. His displays during the tournament was the one of reason why Thailand only conceded a single goal.
CB: Tanaboon Kesarat – Thailand
Tanaboon has long been considered one of the finest young defenders in Thailand and in this SEA Games he has proved those claims. The BEC Tero Sasana young defender brought his wealth of speed, technique and defensive mastery to the Thai squad. His goal against Myanmar in the final game not only was the match decider, but was excellent, and the 21-year-old’s defending deserves the highest praise.
WM: Vo Huy Toan – Vietnam
Vietnam did not progress to the final stage, but Vo Huy Toan was simply superb during the tournament as the 22-year-old produced an impressive attacking display from his left winger position. The SHB Da Nang winger became the one of competition’s top goalscorers with five goals along with Thailand striker Chananan Pombuppha and Myanmar youngster Sithu Aung.
CM: Nay Lin Tun – Myanmar
The 22-year-old is the platform upon which all of Myanmar’s play is built. He operates as a playmaker for his country, distributing the ball to the attacking side and his presence in the centre of midfield is a calming influence to those around him. The Ayeyawady United man scored three goals to lead his team through to the final game.
CM: Evan Dimas – Indonesia
The Persebaya Surabaya star has made the centre of midfield his own and he was one of the main reasons for Indonesia’s fine displays in the SEA Games this year. Evan was full of energy, industry, skill and creativity as he was at the focal point of the sweeping breaks which characterised the play of Aji Santoso’s side. The 20-year-old has become a limelight despite Indonesia failed to clinch any medals in the competition.
CM: Chanathip Songkrasin – Thailand
Perhaps nobody has influenced this SEA Games quite as much as the 21-year-old Thai starlet. Chanathip has oozed class throughout the tournament, where his influence on an impressive attacking side has marked him out as one of the best in region. Messi Jay’s intelligence on the ball, distribution, passing, and movement is key to what makes Thailand such a tough side to beat.
WM: Sithu Aung – Myanmar
One of the revelations of this SEA Games, the Yadanarbon man starred in Myanmar’s march to the final game of tournament. Pacy, tricky and not afraid to run with the ball at his feet. The 18-year-old’s performances in Singapore after scoring five goals proved he what he is capable of when he stays focused despite play not in his natural position as a midfielder – and that he is undoubtedly still have a future in any international levels with Myanmar squad.
FW: Nguyen Cong Phuong – Vietnam
Nguyen Cong Phuong was in majestic form for Vietnam as he notched up three goals and his ratings during the tournament were consistently superb. The Hoang Anh Gia Lai star led his team from the front, literally winning matches for Vietnam to haul them into the semifinals. He faded somewhat in the latter stages, but his performances were still enough to walk away with the bronze medal.
FW: Chananan Pombuppha – Thailand
Started the tournament with four goals against Laos and was a threat in every match he played. The 23-year-old forward also scored in final game against Myanmar to lead his side retaining the gold medal of tournament. Powerful, clinical, skillful and good in positioning, the Muangthong United youngster is everything a future striker which Thailand need at international level.
Coach: Choketawee Promrut – Thailand
Came into this tournament with a sizable question mark hanging over his head due to his previous job was only became Kiatisuk Senamuang’s assistant. However, the 40-year-old proved all the doubters were wrong. His no-nonsense approach has synchronised seamlessly with the disciplined national stereotype, while also leaving just enough creativity for attacking individuals to do their thing, successfully led his team to retain the gold medal with perfect seven-game unbeaten streak.
Chanin Sae-Eae (Thailand), Mac Hong Quan (Vietnam), Hein Thiha Zaw (Myanmar), Keo Sokpheng (Cambodia), Syahrul Azwari (Malaysia), Faris Ramli (Singapore), Paulo Sitanggang (Indonesia).