JUDGE us at the SEA Games.
This was Aide Iskandar's plea to fans after his Under-23 team fell 1-3 to the Cambodia U-22s at the Jalan Besar Stadium last night.
A journalist had questioned him on the fans' reaction at the venue, where shouts of "Aide, out" and "Aide, don't waste our time" could be heard from the crowd.
The Singapore U-23s finished with nine men after captain Shakir Hamzah received his marching orders for a tackle in the box.
Defender Sheikh Abdul Hadi was also sent off after an altercation with a Cambodian player.
A defiant Aide cited the 2014 Suzuki Cup as an example of a team who performed when it mattered.
"Malaysia did not do well in their pre-tournament friendlies but look where they ended up.
"They were in the final competing (against Thailand) for the Cup," he noted.
"The fans have every right to feel the way they do and I apologise to them for the defeat."
The Singapore U-23s opened the scoring in the second minute.
Shahfiq Ghani slipped Sahil Suhaimi through with an incisive pass and the latter was unchallenged as he beat Prak Mony Phirun in goal.
Despite having the lion's share of possession in the first half, the home side failed to test the goalkeeper further and were punished a minute before half-time.
Shakir Hamzah took his eyes off the ball and Cambodian forward Phanny Y Ratha dispossessed the captain to score the equaliser.
Shakir's misfortune was compounded in the 69th minute when he received marching orders after bringing down Prak Mony Udom.
Prak converted the spot-kick and turned provider in the 72nd minute as he prodded the ball into Sam Oeun Pidor's path. The midfielder raced clear to score.
This defeat follows a 1-8 loss to Japan's U-22 team and a 1-2 defeat by Syria's U-23 side last month.
This article was first published on March 20, 2015.
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