The last time Malaysia won the Sea Games gold medal for football was back in 1989. I was 10 years old when that happen but i clearly remembered watching the team celebrate the victory on tv. Fast Forward 20 years and it has happened again! Honestly the team played well and looked like a professional outfit under coach Rajagopal.
What was refreshing is that the team constantly put the Vietnamese under preasure and pushed forward at every opportunity. The goal came from a own goal by the Vietnamese but dont take any credit away from the Malaysian boys who preasured Mai Xuan Hop to putting the ball into his own net.
The Malaysian boys didnt have it easy after loosing to Vietnam 3-1 in the group stages ,beatingThailand 2-1 in the group stage to win a place in the semi-finals. Then in the last four, they downed Laos 3-1.This is definitely a boost for the team and hopefully the team can build from this and slow grow up the FIFA rankings ,the team owes the whole country a string of good results.
I hear lots of people saying that we should not criticize the team but Malaysians are a mature bunch, we know when there is genuine effort and when the team needs bashing. Hopefully the bashing days are numbered if not over
Congrats to Coach Rajagopal and the national team for a job well done!