An early goal from Teerasil Dangda was enough to hand Thailand a slim 1-0 win over Indonesia in the first leg AFF Suzuki Cup semifinal match at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium tonight. The lone scorer tonight was Teerasil Dangda who stunned the Indonesia defence when he nodded Thailand ahead just five minutes into the game.

Indonesia, seeking a good result ahead of the second leg in Bangkok on Dec 20, battled back relentlessly but failed to breach the Thai defence. The Indonesians will now have the difficult task of trying to overcome their opponents away from their fans. For the second match in succession, Indonesia conceded an early goal. In their last preliminary match against Singapore to determine the group champions, Indonesia were breached just minutes into the game. And tonight, in front of over 50,000 screaming fans, the hosts found themselves chasing the game from the fifth minute.

Thailand's Sutee Suksomkit crossed from the left and Teerasil Dangda leapt high and placed the ball into the top right corner, well beyond the reach of the lanky Markus Harison Rihihina. Indonesia had a nasty scare five minutes later when Sutee's freekick smashed through but just before the referee Vo Minh Tri had blown for an infringement. Thailand picked up a another freekick in the 29th minute but Sutee's superbly struck shot was punched away. Ismed Sofyan, to the relief of the Indonesian bench, cleared what would have been a goal off the line after when his keeper was beaten. About eight minutes after the re-start, Thai skipper Datsakorn Thonglao watched in despair as his strike hit the cross bar. Datsakorn was not done and in the 73rd minute, let loose a stinging shot which Markus saved.

With time quickly running out, Indonesia began to intensify their attacks. Benny replaced Bambang Irsyad Aras for Talaohu Abdulmushafry and Arif Suyono. Arif especially was a danger and soon after coming on, almost set up the equaliser but Nataporn Phanrit just narrowly managed to turn the ball away. In the dying minutes, Arif raced in from the left and sent in a low cross into the box but Budi Sudarsono failed to control it.


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