MALAYSIA U-23 1
(Thamil Arasu 46)
SINGAPORE U-23 0
Dominated, shut out and beaten.
Against a full-strength and experienced Harimau Muda machine, it came as little surprise that the Singapore Under-23 side crashed to an opening-day defeat at the Merdeka Tournament on Saturday.
But, after fortuitously coming away with only a 1-0 defeat at the hands of their bitter Causeway rivals, coach V Sundramoorthy was defiant.
Given a full team, he said the Young Lions would be a match for the Malaysians.
"When we have our first-team against Malaysia at the SEA (South-east Asia) Games, it will be a 50-50 game, especially on neutral ground," said the 47-year-old coach.
"We are as good as them, I believe, and we can beat them if we are at our best."
Singapore were missing six key players in Kuantan yesterday, with skipper Hariss Harun, Safuwan Baharudin, Faritz Hameed, Shakir Hamzah, Shahfiq Ghani and goalkeeper Izwan Mahbud all away on national team duty with Bernd Stange's Lions.