Posted by: whatagoal | August 21, 2007

Malaysia got off to a winning starts

Yesterday night, Malaysia under-23 start off their 39th Merdeka Tournament at the MBPJ Stadium in Kelana Jaya with a victory against Loas. The Malaysia Under-23 side defeated Laos 2-0 scored by Safee Sali in the 32nd minute and skipper Mohd Shukor Adan in the 53rd minute. Malaysians was dominated for most of the game and created few opportunity but failed to find the final touches in attack until Safee Sali broke the deadlock. Read more

Posted by: whatagoal | August 20, 2007

CYC 07: Flamengo v Ajax, Malaysia v PSV Eindhoven

Since Malaysia hell a goalless draw against Chelsea, the team is plenty much in the running towards the quarter-final but they have to beat PSV Eindhoven in order to progress. I really hope the Malaysian boys will do well in the final group match and progress much farther in this competition. But playing against PSV Eidnhoven is not an easy task compare to others. Finally the match came to Kuala Lumpur so the fans over here able to can catch some action from this tournament. I definitely don’t want to miss this game where Malaysia has the chance to progress. The match was played in Cheras, KLFA football stadium.

Youth Cup 2007 Match Ticket

Reached the stadium slightly earlier to purchase the ticket, which priced at RM12 for two matches. With every ticket purchased, everyone got a chance to win a trip to London to watch Chelsea playing in Stamford Bridge. Certainly hoping to win but it will be better if the trip is to Manchester! Don’t care so much about it first, filled up a little form that attached together with the ticket and dropped into the lucky draw box when entering the stadium.

Ajak Youth Team

The first game to be play is between Flamengo and Ajak. Number of crowd for this game wasn’t much but I believe the number will increase later on when many of them are actually wanted to watch the second game between Malaysia against PSV Eindhoven. Is always good to reach earlier for a football game where you can find a nice seat and settle down where you also able to watch the teams warming up before the match start.

Ajak vs Flamengo

It should be a tight game between both sides but Flamengo looks the better side with already collected 4 point while Ajak have only collected 1 point so far in this competition.

Ajak vs Flamengo

Shake hand before the kick off. Hope to see some football tricks from these Brazilian boys.

Ajak Youth Squad

Photo shooting for the Dutch side, Ajak. Since both Dutch sides are playing in this competition, it attracted some Dutch supporters into this match where by a group of Dutch family just sit next beside me in the same row. I hope they will enjoy the match and also, Welcome to Malaysia!

Ajak v Flamengo

Flamengo are wearing red & black jersey and as for Ajax, the boys are all in blue color. Kick off at 6.40pm and the match only play for 70 minutes plus stoppage time.

Ajak v Flamengo

Both team started well in the early minute but it was Flamengo who starting to take control in their hand later on and pressured the Ajak’s defense. Ajak only can play defense and surely having some hard time holding the ball longer and this credit to the Flamengo boys who closed out every position play by the Dutch. As the game go on, Flamengo surely looks the better side to score and win this match. They did found a goal in the second half and held the lead till to the final whistle. In the end, Flamengo win the game by 1 goal and the result disappointed some Dutch supporters in the stadium, maybe some better performance for the other Dutch team, PSV Eindhoven in the second match.

PSV Eindhoven v Malaysia

The number of crowds certainly has increased and many of them are here to support Malaysia. This changed the atmosphere in the stadium and increased the level of noise. Is getting nervous and wondering how our Malaysian boys will do in this match. Really hope they will win and proceed to the quarter-final.

Malaysia youth team warming up

When the Malaysian boys came out from the dressing room, the supporters gave them a standing ovation for their good performance so far in the competition. They certainly deserve it and this will surely give them a boost for this match.

PSV Eindhoven v Malaysia

PSV Eindhoven look very relax during the warm up. I think they have a lot of confident for this match and surely love to collect all the points and advanced to the quarter-final after Ajak has been kick out from the competition.

Malaysia Youth Team

As for our Malaysian boys, they look pretty confident as well after a good performance displayed against the blues. They work really hard to get the result from that match and the supporters will be hoping for extra effort again in order to get their first win in this competition.

PSV Eindhoven v Malaysia

Felling extremely tension now and I think all the Malaysia supporters feel that way I do was well. Really hope to see Malaysia advance to the quarter-final and this will mean a lot for the next generation in Malaysia football.

PSV Eindhoven v Malaysia

All was good when both team shake hand before the game start but is about to get ugly later on. The game started differently compare to Chelsea match when Malaysia have the control but not for this match. It was PSV Eindhoven who started well and made our boys chasing around the ball in the first half. Clearly Malaysia have no chance to attack when they can’t even hold the ball long enough to attack. But I can see the boys work really hard to close down every play and hopes to win back some possession for their team.

PSV Eindhoven Team Photo

But they are about to get disappointed when PSV Eindhoven scored twice in the space of 10 mins which really upset the Malaysia supporters. But the boys and the supporters haven’t given up yet because they are still a plenty to play about. They just need to score 1 goal back to keep the game alive. But it didn’t happen for them as the second half played the same way as the first half ended.

Some controversy happens in the 60 minute when several players involved in a fight. Lars J H Hutten certainly feels that the Malaysian boys played too roughly and this lead to some dissatisfaction towards the Malaysian boys. It was him who started the fight by pushing one of our boys. After that, the supporters got involve as well by throwing bottle missile toward Lars J H Hutten. Eventually, the referee has to send him off and the match get carry on.

PSV Eindhoven ended Malaysia hopes but the Malaysian boys still earn the standing ovation from the supporters for their effort in this competition. Once again, the Malaysia football looks bright again after what have the Malaysia under-19 have displayed in Champions Youth Cup. They certainly have gain of a lot of experience from this tournament and hope this will stop the criticism and start supporting our Malaysia football team.

Posted by: whatagoal | August 13, 2007

Champions Youth Cup 2007: Match Day 5

AC Milan 1-0 Arsenal FC
CR Flamengo 1-0 AFC Ajax
FC Bayern München 1-1 Chelsea
Malaysia 0-2 PSV Eindhoven

Posted by: whatagoal | August 13, 2007

Champions Youth Cup 2007: Match Day 4

Paris Saint-Germain  0-1 Juventus FC
Qatar 1-1 FC Barcelona
FC Porto 0-1 Inter Milan
CA Boca Juniors 2-3 Manchester United

Posted by: whatagoal | August 10, 2007

Malaysian boys boleh!

Malaysia Flag

Kudos to our Malaysian boys who fought even so well to held a goalless draw against the top English side, Chelsea. We witness some hardworking and determine young boys fought against the top team, Chelsea who is one of the favorites to win this tournament. Both teams went to this match with zero point and desperately to get some result from this match if they still want to stay in this competition.

The pressure certainly is on Chelsea but nevertheless; the Malaysia side has their own problem as well after what had happen during the Asian Cup. The supporter has asked questions about the football quality in Malaysia. FAM surely deals with a lot of pressure from the press and the supporter recently. Both team look well prepared for this match and determine to battle through for 70 minutes.

Good numbers of crowd turn up for this match as we saw 10,000 local fans gather up bringing the Malaysia flag together with them to show the support. Too bad I couldn’t make it to the match because it was played in Kuching but I was able to catch the actions from live telecast on TV. Let us talk about the differences between our boys compared to the Chelsea boys.

Chelsea is well known with their top class facilities and coaching staff. After Roman Abramovich taken over the club, he invested a lot of money not only to the first team but also into the facilities and the most importantly, the youth development academy. The youth academy in Chelsea consider as a world class side with the right person for the right position for all the young boys who also experience a lot especially with the first team coaching stuff. Chelsea hired some world class coaching staffs that have a lot of experience working with young talented players. But as for the Malaysian boys, the squad only started training together for 1 month and has no any experience compare to other top youth side in this tournament.

But I have to say our Malaysia under-19 coach, Robert Albers done a very good job with the Malaysian young boys given only a month time to train and gel them together. When the press interviewed him about the football development in Malaysia, he explained the reason why our national football quality still haven’t reach they level we expected and after hearing what he have to say, it does make all the sense. He even asked us to stop criticizing and keep showing our support to the Malaysia football and especially to the Malaysian boys out there. We are looking to challenge the top team and not to challenge the result.

After hearing what our youth coach said, I really do believe FAM is doing what they can to improve the football quality in Malaysia. Ok, back to the game now. In the previous match, we saw the Malaysian boys allowed too many space and lacking some concentrate during some occasions but they did work on it and we saw the improvement in this match. To all surprise, is Malaysia who started strongly not only in defense but also in attacking. The boys’ look really determines and showed a lot of character to prove the hard work they have put on.

Malaysia chased every single position and played with a lot of aggressive, launching some well timing tackle to stop the Blues in attacking. Malaysia who was in control during early minutes and tries to take on the Blues with some counter attack. The Malaysian boys not only showed a lot of character out there but also demonstrated a lot of confident on the field. They even displayed some football trick towards the Chelsea defender in order to get pass them and they successfully did it in some occasion. Is good to see them play in such a confident against the topside. The Malaysia have a good chance from the free kick but the shot was well saved by the Chelsea goalkeeper, Niclas Heimann.

Chelsea did have some good chance in the first half but Malaysia defense worked so hard in order to keep the score line level. Kudos to the Malaysian goalkeeper as well, Khairul Fahmie Che Mat who saved some important shot from the Blues and try to made himself as big as possible in front the goal. The Malaysian boys surely pleased the 10,000 supporters in the stadium with their hard work performance. Malaysia certainly the better side in the first half playing with a lot of confident passing the ball around and attacked the Chelsea defense.

But the Malaysia seems to lose their momentum in the start of the 2nd half and certainly looks danger in few occasions. Chelsea attacked more in the wide area with Miroslav Stoch leading the way. He surely created a lot of problem for the Malaysian defenders with his pace. But the hardworking Malaysian defenders won’t give up so easily protecting the penalty area together with their goalkeeper. Chelsea does look in control but they are about to get frustrated when the time running out for them. Malaysia took back the control in the closing minute with determination to share the points with the Blues.

Malaysian boys

After the final whistle blow, the boys and supporters celebrated like they have won the match and the feeling was so great watching these young boys working so hard to challenge some topside in this tournament. I have to say, it was quite touching to see the supporter gave their applause to the boys and this certainly mean a lot to them. The 3rd match will be play in Kuala Lumpur and the number of crowd certainly will increase after watching the display showed by these boys. They are still in the running toward the quarter-final but they will need to win the following match against PSV Eindhoven.

Posted by: whatagoal | August 10, 2007

Champions Youth Cup 2007: Match Day 3

Latest Results:

AC Milan 1-0 Ajax Amsterdam
Bayern Munich 1-0 PSV Eindhoven
Flamengo 2-1 Arsenal
Malaysia 0-0 Chelsea

Posted by: whatagoal | August 9, 2007

Champions Youth Cup 2007: Match Day 2

Porto youth squad

Tonight is the match opening for Group B and Group C or the group of death as many describe it. We saw another goalless draw match between Qatar against Juventus in the earlier match group B. Barcelona beat PSG, 2-1, in Kuantan and both of Barcelonas goals were scored by David Rodriguez, while PSG’s solitary goal was scored by Ted Bolongo.

But it was different case in group C which we saw 5 goals and 4 of it came from the match between Boca Juniors against Inter Milan. This match produced a lot of actions as we can see from the score line and the game ended in a 2-2 draw, which we saw Boca Juniors has the last chance but it didn’t happen for them when their strike hit the post from a free kick.

Barcelona vs PSG

In the latter group match, we have the Portuguese side, Porto against the English side, Manchester United. Both youth squad is very well known for their talented players and we saw this quality produced from this match. It’s surely an exciting match to watch and the crowd enjoyed a lot. Many local supporters turn up for this match in order catch some actions from these young boys. Porto have the control in the early minutes and created number of chances but just couldn’t have a clear cut chance to find an easy goal.

After the earlier control by the Portuguese side, Man Utd took the game in their hand and created some golden opportunities. Febian Brandy was a handful for the Porto side with his pace that really looks threat for the Porto’s defenders. This eventually cost them a goal in the 19th minute when Porto’s defenders thought some of the United player were in offside play but they certainly didn’t have the intention to pursue the ball and this let to create an opportunity for Brandy where he wasn’t in offside position and continue chasing the ball with his pace and coolly chipped the ball pass the goalkeeper, Ruca who was far away from his goal line.

Juventus vs Qatar

Manchester United holds on to their lead but they surely have the intention to find the second goal as they created number of chances in the 2nd half. Brandy again had a golden opportunity in penalty box but Ruca saved his shot brilliantly. Brandy was still a threat to Porto side with his fast pace but he unfortunately had to be substituted out due to a kick on his face. It’s certainly looked painful and United don’t want to risk anymore and decided to substitute him. Man Utd looks very much in control towards the end of the match and secured the lead till the 70th minute and gets all the points they deserve. Some controversy happens in the final whistle when the Porto players complain about the referee ended the match too earlier than they expected. This was clearly showed on the big digital clock in the stadium showing that the match was just played for 69 minutes but the referee stand on his decision by showing his watch that clearly stated 70 minutes included the stoppage time.

Tonight Results:

Manchester United 1-0 FC Porto
Barcelona 2-1 Paris Sanit Germain
Qatar 0-0 Juventus
Boca Juniors 2-2 Inter Milan

Posted by: whatagoal | August 8, 2007

Champions Youth Cup 2007: Opening Day

Malaysia v Bayern München

Yesterday night was the opening match for group A and D and we already have 6 goals and 2 red cards. We saw plenty of actions and certainly entertained the spectators. How our boys doing on the opening match? Well, the Malaysia team could have earn a point against the German side, Bayern München but Viktor Bopp ended the hope by scoring a goal from the free-kick provided by Diego Contento in the injury time after a sloopy defending by the Malaysia team. Some fingers were pointed and blaming toward the lack of concentration in the final moment and eventually cost them at a draw. Bayern München found the touch with a goal by Giancula Simari deep into first-half stoppage time but Bayern’s captain Bjorn Kopplin scored an own goal in 55 minutes and put the game level again.

Bayern München certainly deserves to win this match against the Malaysia after creating number of chances and the Malaysian boys have themselves to blame after giving away a freekick in the last minute. Malaysia allowed too much space and made some mistakes which they have to work on it in order to improve their game in the next match. In the other Group D match, PSV Eindhoven beat Chelsea by 1 goal scored by the substitute Nigel Hasselbaink in the 47 minute.

In the Group A opening match, we saw Flamengo draw 1-1 against the Italian side, AC Milan and a goalless draw in the match between Ajax against Arsenal. It is certainly difficult and different surroundings for all the boys with the humid conditions in Malaysia and the poor pitch conditions. We saw this affected the team during the Asian Cup and was not helped by these conditions.

Yesterday night results:

CR Flamengo 1-1 AC Milan
Malaysia 1-2 FC Bayern München
AFC Ajax 0-0 Arsenal FC
PSV Eindhoven 1-0 Chelsea

Posted by: whatagoal | August 8, 2007

AFC Asian Cup Flashback: Quarter-Final 2

Asian Cup 2007 ended in last Sunday and we have our new Asia Champions, Iraq. I think many of us wouldn’t think of Iraq lifting the Asian Cup but fairy tale ending do exist. I went to watch live football matches 3 times during the Asian Cup and I haven’t post the last match I attended yet. The match was Quarter-Final 2 where Korea face Iran in Bukit Jalil. Just want to share some pictures I took and review the exciting match.

Korea vs Iran
The same penalty game I saw during the match, Malaysia against Uzbekistan. This time I get to shot a closer look at it. The person who can put the ball back in the net will get a ING teddy bear key chain. Wanted to give it a try but since there are many people lined up so in the end, I gave up.

Korea vs Iran
We have a nicer seat in this match where the pitch looks so close to us. Since we are here to support the Korea team, so we packed up together with all the Korean and start cheering for the Korea team.

Korea warming up before the game
We arrived early because all the tickets are in free seating base and happen to catch the Korea team warming up before the match.

Red Devils
Red is the color for the Korean and the stadium was packed with this color. Unfortunately, I wasn’t wearing red color shirt on that day.

Korea vs Iran
Game on! I can’t wait for the match to start. Is kind of weird supporting for other country but since Malaysia is out from the tournament, I guess is ok to pick one team to support. I always like the Korean because of their hard work and their character.

Korea vs Iran
Some actions from that match. Although we have a closer view to the field but our angle is lower compare to the previous matches where we were in higher seat. Is certainly a different two feeling and I do prefer to have higher seat in order to have better angle viewing.

Korean subs warming up
The match ended in 0-0 after the first half and hopes the second half will be a better one. Some Korean substitutes warming up and hoping to get a chance in the 2nd half.

Two Korean Blocking The View
The Koreans was really so into the action and was proven during the entire match even though their team didn’t have any clear cut chance during the match. They stand and shout for the entire game in order to make as much noise as possible for their Korea team. Maybe these two kids get over excited and just won’t keep their butt down on the chair. This eventually blocked not only our view but many others as well and some of them were elder. I remember few of the elder moved their place to other seat in order to get better view of the match. One of them even smack the two boy couple of times and ask them sit down.

Korean little kid

Saw this little cute Korean boy and can’t stand to take few pictures of him. What impressed me the most is that this kid is so brave that during the match, he wanted to use the bathroom and his parent asked him to go by himself. I mean is a long way down to the toilet and the condition of the toilet wasn’t that pleasant at all, let just say it was dark. Eventually the boy without thinking much about it and went ahead to the toilet by himself, alone.

Korea vs Iran, korean shouting
The Korea and Iran supporters shouted during the entire match making the atmosphere in the stadium so lively.

Half Time
The match ended in 0-0 after 90 minutes and stands in this way for the entire extra time and went to a penalties shootout.

Line up for penalties shootout
Both team lining up and wait for their turn to take the penalty kick. It must be a nervous moment for the players. Always amaze how these players can hold up their nerves and handle the pressure from the supporters.

Korea vs Iran penalties shootout

Korean won the penalties shootout
In the end, the Korean won the match against Iran 4-2 in penalties shootout. Even though we didn’t see any goal from this match but we did enjoyed the actions and is our first time watching a penalties shootout live!

Korean Fans
Delighted Koreans celebrating as their national team advanced into Semi-Finals. We are happy as well to see the Korea won and celebrated together with them.

Korea vs Iran, Half Time
Applause for all the support shown by the Korea supporters in this match.

Korea vs Iran penalties shootout final score
In the end, we enjoyed the match very much and happy to see the Korea advanced their way into Semi-Finals. Too bad I can’t make it to that match at Bukit Jalil but the journey stopped for the Korea team after they beaten by the Iraq in their second consecutive penalties shootout. I was hoping to see them in the Final but I guess their gas ran out after some tiring matches.

Posted by: whatagoal | August 8, 2007

Man Utd final pre-season preparations

On Wednesday, Manchester United will complete their pre-season preparations with two matches against Glentoran and Dunfermline. Paul Scholes could make a return from injury in tonight match against Dunfermline at East End Park. The Devils squad will be split into half for tonight’s matches, with another half simultaneously face on Glentoran in conjunction of the Glens’ 125th anniversary celebrations. Ronaldo who is expected to be feature in the match against Glentoranbut but was withdrawal from the squad due to a minor ankle injury he picked up and was left in Manchester just as a precaution. Gabriel Heinze was also left in Manchester with a slight muscle injury.

Reds’ friendly squads

Dunfermline FC vs Man Utd
Final Score: Dunfermline 0-4 Man Utd (Eagles 23, Giggs 35, Rooney 60 pen & 87)

Dunfermline vs Man Utd: Van der Sar, Kuszczak; Brown, Bardsley, Pique, Silvestre, Eckersley; Hargreaves, Fletcher, Scholes, S Evans, Eikrem, Eagles; Giggs, Rooney.

Glentoran FC vs Man Utd
Final Score: Glentoran 0-3 Man Utd (Campbell 5, Evra 13, Nani 36)

Glentoran vs Man Utd: Heaton; Simpson, Vidic, Ferdinand, Evra, Lea; Carrick, O’Shea, Gibson, Martin, Nani, Anderson; Dong, Campbell.

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