Indonesia apologises
Published on: Saturday, September 07, 2019
By: Bernama
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Armoured vehicles outside the Gelora Bung Karno stadium in Jakarta.
JAKARTA: Indonesia’s Youth and Sports Minister, Imam Nahrawi on Friday apologised for the ugly incident which broke out during the Indonesia-Malaysia match at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium on Thursday night.

Imam Nahrawi met Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman to apologise and expressed regrets over the commotion created by local supporters.

The meeting which was held at a hotel in Jakarta was shared on Syed Saddiq’s Instagram site, Friday.  

In the Group G match for the 2022 World Cup/ 2023 Asian Cup Second Qualifying Round, Malaysia came from behind to score a dramatic 3-2 win before 50,000 supporters of the Garuda squad.

But the match was marred by incidents of rioting by Indonesian fans apart from throwing bottles and various objects including flares from upper section above Malaysian fans.

The incident forced South Korean referee, Ko Hyungjin to stop play for a while when both teams were tied at 2-2 for almost 10 minutes.

However when the situation was under control again, there was no incidents until the final whistle which saw Malaysia under coach Tan Cheng Hoe garnering three precious points from the game.

The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) has said it will lodge an official protest to the International Football Federation (Fifa) and Asian Football Confederation (AFC) over the Indonesian supporters’ aggressive behaviour towards Malaysian fans. 

Syed Saddiq had joined Harimau Malaya hardcore supporter group, Ultras Malaya in supporting the national squad at the stadium.

“I was with the Harimau Malaya supporters watching the World Cup qualifier at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium. Iron objects, bottles and flares were thrown at us several times. There were also some Indonesian supporters trying to break into the Malaysian fans area and the match had to be halted.

“Gangsterism will not be tolerated in any way. The safety of Malaysian players and supporters is my priority,” Syed Saddiq said. 

Meanwhile, the Harimau Malaya squad had to be transported out of the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium in armoured Barracudas after the match. 

For safety reasons, all 24 players and squad officials were put on the armoured vehicles and ferried back to their hotel, after the match was marred by crowd trouble and aggressive behaviour from the home fans. 

Sources told Bernama that five armoured vehicles were used to transport the Malaysian players and officials to keep them safe from the home fans, with a bus also used as a decoy vehicle to distract their attention. 

Malaysia had gone through the same security situation twice before, when they played the home team in the finals of the 2010 AFF Cup and 2011 Sea Games.

Back then, they also had to be transported from their hotel to Gelora Bung Karno Stadium in an armoured Barracuda due to angry fans. – Bernama 



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