• FT





  • FT

    Saudi Arabia





Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, Indonesia

Referee: Ali Al Badwawi | Attendance: 70000

* Local time based on your geographic location.

Saudi Arabia

  • Yasser Al Qahtani 12'
  • Saad Al Harthi 90'

2 - 1



  • Elie Aiboy 20'

Saudi Arabia 2-1 Indonesia: Hero Al Harthi

JAKARTA, July 14 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia crashed Indonesia's Asian Cup party on Saturday by beating the co-hosts 2-1 in Group D thanks to Saad Al Harthi's stoppage-time winner.

After dominating for the better part of an hour, Indonesia

simply ran out of gas in the latter stages.

Saudi Arabia, three times winners of Asia's premier soccer

tournament, climbed to the top of the group on four points after

the win, with Indonesia in second a point behind.

South Korea play Bahrain in the other group match on Sunday.

Indonesia coach Ivan Kolev, who had hoped for a brighter end

to his 50th birthday, could not hide the heartbreak.

'I felt very disappointed for the team, especially for the

supporters,' said the popular Bulgarian, who received an ovation

from the local media at the post-match news conference.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was among the

88,000 in attendance at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, hoping to

see the home side clinch a quarter-final berth with a win.

Indonesia, backed by a manic home crowd, started brightly

and carved out a couple of early chances, but it was Saudi

Arabia that grabbed the lead in the 15th minute.

Ahmed Al Bahri surged down the right and delivered an

inviting cross into the box, where Yasser Al Qahtani snapped a

header past Indonesia goalkeeper Yandri Pitoy.

The home side struck back five minutes later.

Elie Aiboy, who earlier spurned an opportunity with the goal

at his mercy, latched onto a through ball and strode into the

penalty area, drawing Saudi goalkeeper Yasser Al Mosailem and

slotting home.

The Saudi keeper had to make two stunning stops just before

half-time as Indonesia's impish wingers threatened to run riot,

but they failed to press home the advantage.

Saudi Arabia looked the stronger side in the second half

while the co-hosts wilted, and it was only goalkeeper Pitoy that

kept Indonesia in the game.

But after two great saves to deny Abdulrahman Al Qahtani,

Pitoy was finally beaten deep in injury time when substitute Al

Harthi popped up to head home the winner.

The goal put Saudi in pole position in Group D, but coach

Helio Cesar dos Anjos received more criticism than acclaim for

his side's performance from the Saudi Arabian media.

'There's no national team on the planet that can play a game

without having a few problems,' the Brazilian countered.

'It doesn't matter if it's Germany, Brazil or Argentina who

were playing today, they all would have had problem moments.'

Scoring Summary

  • Saudi Arabia
  • Indonesia
(20') Elie Aiboy


  • Saudi Arabia
  • Indonesia
Yellow Cards
Khaled Aziz (53')