The leading newspaper New Straits Times said the dream by the Malaysian team of raising the trophy at My Dinh National Stadium in Hanoi vanished as Vietnam became the champions for the second time. It added that once again, the Malaysian team had bigger possession but failed to capitalize on the advantage.
New Straits Times held that the Malaysian players did all what they could but Vietnam’s goalie Dang Van Lam and his defenders were always vigilant and spoiled their chances. Vietnam played a proactive defensive game from the middle of the second half to keep the 1-0 lead.
Malaysian players can hold their heads high after the defeat as many had held that coach Tan Cheng Hoe’s boys could not go far at this tournament, the newspaper added.
Another Malaysian newspaper, the Malaymail, held that the goal by Vietnam’s forward Nguyen Anh Duc (No. 11) at the sixth minute spoiled the guests’ dream.
Malaysian players had a number of chances but they failed to beat Vietnam’s goalkeeper Lam and his defenders, and the result cannot satisfy them as the 2010 champions were eager to repeat their feast this time, it added.
Vietnam held the Cup trophy again after 10 years by beating Malaysia 1-0 in the second-leg final of the tournament that took place at My Dinh National Stadium, Hanoi, on December 15 night. The national team took the first champion title of the AFF Suzuki Cup in 2008, also at My Dinh Stadium.