Thai Son Nam win thriller to make final
Yogyakarta: Thai Son Nam will face Mes Sungun Varsaghan in the AFC Futsal Club Championship Indonesia 2018 final after coming from behind to defeat Bank of Beirut 6-5 in a thrilling semi-final on on Friday.
Thai Son Nam’s win sets up an enticing final against the Islamic Republic of Iran club while Beirut will play Nafit Al Wasat in the third-place playoff on Sunday.
Thai Son Nam started with purpose as they tried to get a head start in the game but the Vietnam club found Beirut’s defence hard to breakdown.
Abdultahman Altawail found himself with space and made a surging run in the second minute but Beirut goalkeeper Hussein Hamadani was in top form to deflect the effort.
Beirut, however, did not sit back and went ahead in the second minute when Mahdi Javid timed his run to perfection and his pass found Mouhammad Hammoud unmarked in the box and he made no mistake from close range.
Thai Son Nam came close to scoring in the seventh minute when Vu Duc Tung hit the woodwork and Chau Doan Phat struck his effort into the stands from the top of the arc.
The Lebanese club stayed firm, and in the 15th minute Karim Abou Zeid beat two defenders on the left and fired his shot past Thai Son Nam goalkeeper Ho Van Y to double their advantage.
Rattled by the two-goal deficit, Thai Son Nam surged for an opening but Beirut kept it together as they defended from Thai Son Nam’s waves of attacks.
The Vietnam club, however, finally found a breakthrough in the 19th minute when Vu Quoc Hung caught Beirut napping as his strike flew past Hamadani.
Seconds later, Thai Son Nam attacked in numbers but this time were denied by the crossbar following Pham Suc Hoa’s effort from the top of the arc.
In the second half, Bank of Beirut restored their two-goal advantage in the 21st minute after some neat exchanges saw them break down Thai Son Nam’s defence and Hammoud picked up his second of the night from close range.
Thai Son Nam played a high-pressing game soon after and should have scored in the 28th minute but were denied by the woodwork once again following Altawail’s volley from outside the box.
However, Vu Quoc Hung pulled one back in the 31st minute when he blasted his effort from the top of the arc to reduce Thai Son Nam’s deficit.
The Vietnamese club then scored two quickfire goals in the 33rd minute through Vu Duc Tung from close range following Nguyen Thanh Tin’s pass and Nguyen got his name on the scoresheet seconds later after capitalising on a defensive error to fire Thai Son Nam into the lead for the first time in the match.
With four minutes left in normal regulation, Beirut activated the power play with Patrick Vieira Luz making up a five-pronged attack but Thai Son Nam’s Nguyen had other ideas when he fired from the centre half into an open goal to make it 5-3.
Beirut however hit back when Zeid made his way in the box and scored in the 39th minute to make it 5-4.
Thai Son Nam scored again from their own half in the 39th minute from Pham who picked up the loose ball and fired his effort into an empty goal.
Beirut tried to fight back and Javid made it 6-5 with seconds left to play after his shot from outside the box found its way past Ho but it was too late as Thai Son Nam held on to seal a place in the final.
Thai Son Nam Head Coach Miguel Rodrigo:
"I'm very proud of my players. We never gave up and came back fighting to win the match. My players worked very hard and playing Beirut was was not easy in the first half, and we went down 3-1 in the second half but we persevered and now we are in the final."
Bank of Beirut Head Coach Dejan Dedovic:
"It's very hard right now and I'm very disappointed, my players are heartbroken. We deserved to win the match against Thai Son Nam and it's very disappointing."