Apr 21, 2012

One of the worst matches in the history

The ASEAN Football Championship (renamed now to AFF Suzuki Cup) tournament in 1998 will always be saved in the history of football as one of the worst tournaments. Why? Let me explain. It was one of the matches of this tournament that made it so infamous. Thailand faced Indonesia in semi-finals. The winners of this match would play Vietnam who was the host of the Cup that year and were in the greatest form since many years. The loser of the match would face Singapore that was much easier to play against. Also, facing Vietnam would mean moving training bases to Hanoi and none of the teams wanted to do that. So, what exactly happened that day?

Well, the thing that happened was that noone even tried to score until referees began giving out cautions. Players were just passing the ball around. Then both teams scored two goals without any emotions and celebrations or will to even save any goal. You may think, well, it didn't look that bad i bet. It was only getting worse. With the score 2-2 and only seconds remaining, Indonesia's defender Mursyid Effendi took the ball, turned and placed it in his own net. Indonesia was no longer scared of facing Vietnam, they were celebrating after their own goal because they could play against Singapore.

Mursyid Effendi

Ironically Thailand lost to Vietnam in semi-finals, but so did Indonesia with Singapore. Thailand had to counter Indonesia once again for the third-place playoff. Indonesia won by penalty shootout, and the winner of the Cup wasn't Vietnam, but surprisingly Singapore. After the tournament FIFA fined both teams for violating the spirit of the game, the entire Thailand management team resigned and Mursyif Effendi received a lifetime ban from international football. Both Thailand and Indonesia were suspended from playing for three months.
 You can watch the highlights of the match here:

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