YANGON (21 Sept 2011) Ė Thailand, down to 10-men from the 58th minute onwards, confidently held on to gun down Vietnam 5-3 in the shootout and claim the AFF Under-19 Championship title at the Youth Training Centre here tonight.

The score after 90 minutes was 1-1 and it did not change after extratime, forcing the game into the dreaded shootout.

While the Thais were celebrating their success, the Vietnamese were sore at the way things turned out for them. Decisions that did not go their way in the first half and again during the shootout left the Vietnamese players and officials red-faced at the end of the match.

The first incident took place in the first half when referee Nagor Amir Noor Mohamed twice ordered the penalty to be re-taken. The second was for the deciding fifth penalty kick which Vietnam had to save to remain in the fight.

Vietnam keeper Nguyen Son Hai saved the shot but was judged to have moved off his line before the kick, resulting in the re-take. Perapat Notchaiya made no mistake the second time and Thailand went on to win the title.

Earlier, Vietnam made it tough for themselves when Nguyen Minh Haiís opening penalty was saved by Watchara Buathong. Vietnam never recovered and had to settle for the silver. In an earlier playoff, Malaysia defeated Myanmar 4-2, also in a shootout, to take the bronze.

For Vietnam, the game should have been settled within regulation. They should be upset with themselves for not taking advantage of being one player up after Jaturong Pimkoon was sent off for a second booking just before the hour mark.

The first half was interrupted in the 14th minute, not by a heavy downpour but a protest from the Vietnam bench. Referee Nagor had awarded a penalty to Thailand after the Vietnam goalkeeper Nguyen Son Hai fouled a Thai player.

Pakorn Parmpak was spot on with his kick but Nagor ordered a re-take. Pakorn took the penalty again but this time it was saved. Nagor however ordered it to be re-taken again as the Vietnam goalkeeper had apparently come off his line before the kick. At this point, the Vietnam officials called their players off the pitch.

For some 12 minutes the officials argued by the pitch side. It took the intervention of tournament Head of Delegation, U Zaw Zaw, who is also the president of the Myanmar FA, to end the impasse. Both teams agreed to play on and Thailandís Athit Wisetsilpa easily converted the penalty.

But the drama was not over yet as Vietnam almost immediately charged back and struck the equaliser through ace striker Ngueyn Xuan Nam. The situation was still somewhat tense forcing Nagor to book two Thai players, Adison Promrak and Jaturong before the interval. Jaturong would later regret his silly booking which he picked up for arguing with the referee.

The 15-minute break saw cooler head prevail in the second half. The players were more clearly composed and were focussed on the game. That turned the final exciting as both sides worked their way forward in the hunt for more goals.

Unfortunately, it never came and the game was forced into extratime. Prior to that, both Vietnam and Thailand had several close calls. Thailand suffered a setback in the 58th minute when Jaturong tackled the Vietnam keeper and was booked a second time.

In the dying minutes, Thailand had their best chance to seal it but Narakorn, who had already beaten the keeper, could not muster a strong enough shot and it was cleared well before it crossed the line.

Both teams were pushing hard in extratime but were not able to finish off each other. And after 120 minutes of slogging on the pitch, the game was to be decided in the shootout.


THAILAND (Blue/Blue/Blue): Watchara Buathong (GK), Tanakorn Saipanya (Cpt), Thitiphan Puangjan, Athit Wisetsilpa, Pakorn Parmpak, Jaturong Pimkoon, Narakorn Kana (Itthiphon Yotphrom, 104th), Narubadin Weerawatnodom, Nitipong Selanon, Perapat Notchaiya, Adison Promrak

Head coach: Somchai Choyboochum

Scorer: Athit Wisetsilpa (35th, pen)

Yellow cards: Jaturong Pimkoon (43rd, 58th), Adison Promrak (39th), Nakorn Kana (68th), Athit Wisetsilpa (110th), Itthiphon Yotphrom (116th), Pakorn Parmpak (119th)

VIETNAM (Red/Red/Red): Nguyen Son Hai (GK), Vo Huy Toan (Nguyen Van Dung, 35th, Nguyen Viet Phong, 77th), Le Xuan Anh, Que Ngoc Hai (Cpt), Do Hung Dung, Ho Sy Sam, Phan Dinh Thang, Nguyen Thanh Hien, Nguyen Xuan Nam, Nguyen Minh Hai (Le Quoc Anh, 38th), Nguyen Van Manh

Head coach: Trieu Quang Ha

Scorers: Nguyen Xuan Nam (36th)

Yellow cards: Nguyen Xuan Nam (65th), Nguyen Van Dung (77th), Nguyen Viet Phong, (85th)


Referee: Nagor Amir Noor Mohamed (Mas)

Asst Referee 1: Grant Rojas (Phi)

Asst Referee 2: Sivanesan Muniandy (Mas)

Fourth Official: Jovanie Villagracia (Phi)

Match Commissioner: Juan Miguel Pacifico David (Phi)

Referee Assessor: Juan Miguel Pacifico David (Phi)

General Coordinator: Joseph Samuel (Mas)




(Both matches at the Youth Training Centre)

21 Sept: MYANMAR 0 (2) MALAYSIA 0 (4) / THAILAND 1 (5) VIETNAM 1 (3)

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