Malaysia back on track

Co-hosts Malaysia thrashed Laos 4-1 to put their defence of the AFF Suzuki Cup title back on track in Kuala Lumpur last night.

Safiq Bin Rahim (15), Safee Sali (66), Wan Zack Haikal (75) and Khyril Muhymeen (79) were on target for Malaysia while Loas got a consolation goal from Khonesavanh Sihavong (39).

In the other Group B game, Indonesia edged Singapore 1-0 with Andik Vermansah scoring the winner in the 86th minute.

Indonesia lead the group with four points while Singapore and Malaysia each have three and Laos one. The top two teams from each of the two groups advance to the semi-finals of the biennial Southeast Asian championship.

In Saturday's final Group B matches, Malaysia face Indonesia and Singapore meet Laos.

In Bangkok, Thailand coach Winfried Schaefer said yesterday he would not allow Vietnam to easily claim the maximum points when they meet in their last Group A match at Rajamangala National Stadium tomorrow.

Thailand have already qualified for the semi-finals with two wins, while Vietnam need a win against the co-hosts to stand any chance of progressing after a 1-1 draw with Myanmar and a 1-0 loss to the Philippines.

The Philippines, who have three points, take on Myanmar at Supachalasai tomorrow.

Schaefer said: "Although we have qualified for the semi-finals, we will not play for a draw with Vietnam. We will not let them get three points. We have to win every match and want to beat Vietnam."

Thailand will be without Phichitphong Choiuchiu who is suspended for receiving two yellow cards, while Teerasil Dangda, Chonlatit Jantakam and Adul Lahsoh have all been booked once.

Schaefer said he would rest the trio against Vietnam.

The German coach praised Teerasil for scoring three goals in Thailand's 4-0 win against Myanmar on Tuesday night.

"He is one of the best players in Asia. He is fantastic. He is clever and a good finisher," he said.

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Writer: Tor Chittinand
Position: Reporter