Vietnam unbeaten at home against Indonesia for 20 years

By Hieu Luong   March 24, 2024 | 05:04 pm PT
Vietnam and Indonesia will play the second leg of their 2026 World Cup qualifier on Tuesday in My Dinh Stadium in Hanoi, where the hosts had never been beaten since 2004.

The last time Indonesia won at My Dinh Stadium was in the group stages of the 2004 AFF Cup, with a score of 3-0. Since then, Indonesia have visited My Dinh six more times, among them were three friendlies, and earned four draws and two losses.

In their most recent match on Vietnam’s soil, Indonesia lost 0-2 in the second leg of the 2022 AFF Cup semi-finals.

Nguyễn Tiến Linh (áo đỏ) ghi bàn vào lưới Indonesia ở phút thứ ba trận bán kết lượt về AFF Cup 2022. Ảnh: Hiếu Lương

Nguyen Tien Linh (R) scores in Vietnam's 2-0 victory against Indonesia in the second leg of the 2022 AFF Cup semi-finals. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

The memory of that defeat, where the confident Indonesia conceded a goal as early as the 3rd minute, is still fresh in midfielder Marselino Ferdinan's mind. "We conceded an early goal perhaps because we were not focused," said the 2004-born forward. "We are now aware that playing in Hanoi is not easy."

Ferdinan urged his teammates to be mentally prepared to put on their best performance in Vietnam. Assistant coach Nova Arianto also agreed that Vietnam are not to be underestimated, even though Indonesia came out victorious in both sides' last two matches.

Indonesia defeated Vietnam 1-0 in the first leg of the World Cup qualifiers at Bung Karno Stadium last Thursday, after also beating Vietnam 1-0 at the 2023 Asian Cup's group stage in January. If they secure another victory in the rematch on Tuesday, Indonesia will be in a prime position to advance to the World Cup third qualifiers for the first time.

The advantage still lies with Indonesia even with a draw, as they will play both remaining two matches against Iraq and the Philippines at home. They are currently in second place in Group F with four points, one more than Vietnam.

Indonesia's 1-0 victory over Vietnam at the first leg of the 2026 World Cup qualifiers at Bung Karno Stadium, March 21, 2024.

"Indeed, it has been a long time since Indonesia won at My Dinh Stadium," Coach Shin Tae-yong admitted. "I will try to prove that we can win here."

Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) President Erick Thohir also remained cautious. "I highly appreciate the disciplined style of play that earned us our first win at the 2026 World Cup second qualifiers. I hope the players maintain their form and focus when coming to Vietnam," he said. "Stay humble and concentrated because the battle is far from over."

Thohir reminded the players to maintain their physical fitness, uphold discipline, train diligently, and adhere to all instructions from the coaching staff. "Prove to the fans that you can perform well in Vietnam," he said.

It is all good news for Indonesia as they had no injuries in the match at the Bung Karno Stadium. Moreover, they welcomed three quality additions, namely captain and defender Asnawi Mangkualam after serving a suspension and two naturalized players, midfielder Thom Haye and striker Ragnar Oratmagoen.

Thom Haye is anticipated to bolster Indonesia's midfield with the qualities of a starting midfielder for SC Heerenveen in the Dutch Eredivisie. Indonesia fans were also confident after witnessing the impressive performance against Vietnam by center-back Jay Idzes, who plays for Italian Serie B club Venezia.

go to top