SYRIA – Malaysia failed to shine in their final Olympic Qualifier after they went down 3-0 Syria despite having Malaysians supporters at the stand.
The game saw much defending from the Malaysians as they kept the goal hungry Syrians from scoring. The Malaysian side featured some new faces including goalkeeper Izwan Tarmizi as coach Ong Kim Swee seemed determined to shape a new team for coming challenges as national hero Khairul Fahmi looks set to exit the under-21 squad when he becomes 24 next year.
Despite the results, the Malaysians didn’t allow Syria’s defence to rest as they did try to push forward. However, with most attacks from the Malaysians limited to long distance efforts, nothing materialized. Syria on the other hand opted to manipulate the high defence line the Malaysians were employing, making it easy for their quick paced strikers to launch their attacks. Despite that, the Malaysian defence stood strong, to keep both teams tied until the breather with Syria looking dissapointed.
The breather saw the Syrians showing more urgency as they practically threw every man they had to the Malaysians. This tactic worked as the Malaysian defence crumbled in the 46th minute with Marzan scoring a 30-yard screamer.
Malaysia’s fortune turned from bad to worst as Mohd Fadli Shas was ordered out from the game for stepping on a player. The Malaysian high line defence again crumbled as Izwan was lobbed for Syria’s second goal.
Ten minutes later, the Syrians made sure Malaysia ended their Olympic Qualifier with no point to show with Al-Zuma sliding in the third and final goal of the night.
Ginal score: Syria 3-0 Malaysia