Indonesia get two red cards in defeat against Qatar at U23 Asian Cup opener

By Lam Thoa   April 15, 2024 | 07:02 pm PT
Indonesia conceded a penalty, had two men sent off and lost 0-2 to host Qatar in the opening game of the U23 Asian Cup on Monday night.

In the 42nd minute, when the score was 0-0, captain Rizky Ridho tackled Mahdi Al Mejaba in the box. Initially, referee Nasrullo Kabirov gave Indonesia a free kick. But after receiving a signal from the VAR room, he gave Rizky a yellow card and handed Qatar a penalty. From the spot, Khaled Ali shot into the middle of the goal and got Qatar ahead.

Indonesia coaching staff and players were not satisfied with Kabirov's decision. At the end of the first half, Ridho chased after Kabirov to complain, but the Tajikistan referee waved him off and told him to return to his position.

The penalty changed the outcome of the match at Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium in Doha. Before that, with the 4-2-3-1 formation, Indonesia played counterattacking football. They effectively blocked the opponent's attacks and almost opened the score in the 39th minute, as Rafael Struick's shot hit the post to the disbelief of thousands of Indonesian fans in the stands.

Indonesia (in white) lost 0-2 to Qatar in the opening game of U23 Asian Cup on April 15, 2024. Photo by AFC

Indonesia (in white) lost 0-2 to Qatar in the opening game of U23 Asian Cup on April 15, 2024. Photo by AFC

In the second half, before Indonesia could adjust their tactics, they lost a player. In the first minute of play, Ivan Jenner received a second yellow card and was sent off for a tackle that slightly touched the shoes of the opponent. The Indonesia coaching staff and players were against this call but the decision was not changed.

Things got worse for Indonesia when they conceded the second goal just eight minutes later. Ahmed Al Rawi took a beautiful free kick from outside the box. The ball curved and hit the post before going into the net. Goalkeeper Ernando Ari tried to reach as far as he could but couldn’t block the shot.

In the remaining minutes, the match was cut into small pieces because of many fouls from both sides. Coach Shin was also given a warning for his reaction after the referee only gave a yellow card to a Qatari player after he tackled the opponent from behind.

Indonesia ended the match with only nine players on the field. In the fifth minute of injury time, substitute striker Ramadhan Sananta stepped on Emad Aiash's ankle. Referee Kabirov initially gave him a yellow card, but after consulting VAR, he changed it to a red.

Qatar won 2-0 but also lost both players who scored because of injuries. After defeating Indonesia, the host rose to the top of group A with three points. Australia and Jordan shared the last two positions after drawing 0-0. In the next fixture of group A on April 18, Qatar will play Jordan, while Indonesia face Australia.

The U23 Asian Cup takes place in Qatar with 16 teams. The tournament is considered an Asian qualifier for the 2024 Paris Olympics. The top three teams will go to France and the fourth-placed team will face an African team in the playoff for the remaining spot.

U23 Asian Cup hightlights: Qatar 2-0 Indonesia

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