AFF Suzuki Cup 2016: Group A Recap

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With all of the turmoil that has consumed Indonesian football in the last five years, including a year-long FIFA suspension which cost the country participation in 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying, few would blame any observer from expecting a third straight group stage exit this year.

The final 4-2 scoreline in the team’s defeat to was hardly representative of how close the match was, and they were perhaps lucky to escape their match against a profligate side with a 2-2 draw.

Indonesia’s quality shone at last with their backs against the wall against on Friday night, with Andik Vermansyah delivering a tremendous 1-1 equaliser after the hour mark before Stefano Lilipaly’s 85th-minute stunner clinched advancement to the knockout stage.

Though he will have a tough challenge ahead of him when his side face a strong Vietnam in the semifinals, Alfred Riedl should be lauded for having performed wonders in his third stint in charge of the side.