Alfred Riedl wants to stay Indonesia coach despite loss to Thailand
Losing AFF Suzuki Cup final coach Alfred Riedl says that he wants to extend his stay in charge of Indonesia.
Riedl signed a short-term deal after Indonesia were re-admitted to world football following the lifting of their 12-month FIFA ban in May.
In his third stint in charge, he oversaw an impressive campaign in which the Merah Putih push regional powerhouses Thailand all the way before losing 3-2 on aggregate in the 2016 final. Thailand won the second leg 2-0 in Bangkok on Saturday night.
"We are happy we made the final ... we did not really believe we could make the final," Riedl told the tournament's official website.
"I have no idea what [Football Association of Indonesia] is planning. But I would like to build a strong team to challenge Thailand."
Other candidates, including Robert Alberts, the Dutch coach of PSM Makassar, have reportedly been put on standby in case Riedl decides to move home to Austria.
"Congrats to Thailand, they are the best team in Southeast Asia," Riedl added. "They did a good job. We could not penetrate their defence."
Meanwhile, Thailand coach Kiatisuk Senamuang said the nation's fifth AFF triumph was for both their new king Maha Vajiralongkorn, and the late monarch, Bhumibol Adulyadej.
"We dedicate this for the new king... we dedicate the Cup for the fans and for the [late] king," he said.
"The win is a New Year's gift for all our fans."
The AFF Suzuki Cup victory is Thailand's second in a row since Kiatisuk took over three years ago.
He added that after Wednesday's 2-1 defeat in the first leg in Indonesia, the players "were very down," but wanted to "fight for the fans" in Bangkok where they held Asian champions Australia to a 2-2 draw on Nov. 15.
Kiatisuk will now focus on Thailand's 2018 AFC World Cup qualifying campaign, which resumes in March. He's likely to stay on as national coach until beyond the 2019 AFC Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
"I had many comments from fans to try and help... I want to take the team forward, and I want the fans to trust me," he said.
Kiatisuk, 43, has now won five AFF titles, three of them as a player.
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