Malaysia suffered another defeat at the hands of DPR Korea and are now confirmed to be out of the running to qualify from Group B to reach the 2019 Asian Cup. The final score was reminiscent of the first match as Korea once again ran out 1-4 winners.
Nelo Vingada surprised everyone with his starting line-up that was shorn of any player from Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT). Syafiq Ahmad, Ahmad Khairil ‘Beto’ Anuar, Amirul Azhan and Adam Nor Azlin all got to make their debut at senior level. Meanwhile Jorn Andersen retained the same XI that did so well last Friday.
The new Malaysia XI started off rather well, pressing their opponent in a higher intensity that wasn’t seen in the first match. Vingada’s team had arguably their best 10 minutes period since reaching Buriram.
However the new-found confidence took quick blows in succession as Malaysia showed that they failed to learn from the first match. For the second match running, Kim Su Yong headed in at the near post from a corner kick in the 15th minute, repeatin his effort from a few days back.
The same man would strike again as DPR Korea showed their prowess in the air from another corner kick. Su Yong reacting quickest to flick the ball past Hafizul Hakim in the 20th minute as Korea claimed a 2-0 lead.
For a while, Malaysia were able to recover their composure and they managed to keep DPR Korea at bay until one moment of carelessness at the back towards the end of the first half caused the gap to increase.
Nazirul Naim was caught out of position and as the entire defence shifted to the left to compensate, Su Yong found himself unmarked in the middle of the penalty box to sweep home his hattrick goal in the 45th minute.
As swift with his decision before the start of the match, Vingada was also quick to make changes after the half time break. Malaysia moved to a 5-man defence with Francisco ‘Kiko’ Insa being replaced by Fadhli Shas while Beto’s debut was cut short for Safiq Rahim to come into the side.
It was a fruitful change as DPR Korea no longer found the space to play and with the added man for Malaysia, Korea also lost the opportunity to dominate aerially. They were forced to be more intelligent with their play but Korea eventually managed to breach Malaysia’s defence.
The only thing that DPR Korea were able to outplay and get behind Malaysia’s defence, they got their fourth goal of the night. Ri Un Chol’s run was picked up and his low pass to the centre was easily converted by Pak Kwang Ryong to make it 0-4 to Korea.
Substitute Safawi Rasid repeated his effort from Friday night with another goal against DPR Korea from a wonderful counter attacking move in the 84th minute. Nor Azam worked a precise through ball for the JDT player to score past Ri Myong Guk to make it 1-4.
That was all Malaysia could muster and the result heaped more pressure on Vingada as he’s now still left searching for his first win in charge of Malaysia as the Malayan Tigers end 2017 without a single win under their belt.