Garuda fought back!

Football or Soccer in USA, is one unique sport. It is a language, a language that everyone knows, a language that even people in the streets no matter how poor they are, they can use it, they can play soccer. Football is a universal language and today, we became its witness again.

It was an uphill task from the start, Indonesia lost 0-3 back in the 26th December 2010 at Bukit Jalil and we needed 3 goals or more to be the champion or at least push it to the extra time or even a spotkick duel. Early in the morning #GarudaFightsBack – a hashtag made popular by @pandji was already Trending by the time.

3PM and Senayan was already red, hell, even most of the parts of Jakarta was full of red shirts Indonesian. It didn’t matter if you were wearing original Nike Indonesian jersey or if it was a replica. We all wore red and white on our hearts, and as we all shout and chant ‘Garuda Di Dadaku’

The game was started with anxiety and expectations of no-less than 90-thousands attendance, full house it is and a Gung-Ho approach was what i saw this afternoon from the famous Alfred Riedl. Malaysia sat back with only Safee(#10), Idlan(#9) and Safiq(#8), the captain, upfront.

A penalty was given by the referee on the 18th minute because of Mohd Sabre bin Mat Abu handball. With all the country expectation on his shoulder, Firman Utina fired a weak effort to the left of the goal, and easily saved by the goalkeeper, Khairul Fahmi. After that, Malaysia weathered the storm by Indonesian attack force, effort after effort came to nothing, if there’s a big chance, Khairul Fahmi always there to safe the goal.

It was a heartbreaking-yet-superb goal by Safee, which just confirmed that Indonesia will need miracle to turn this back to Indonesia favour. Indonesia never gave up and in result, Nasuha(pictured) scored from a rebound after Fahmi pushed Bustomi shot aside. Ridwan wrote his name on the scoresheet after a great effort from the right side, he cut inside and shot with his weaker left foot.

There is no excuse, no lasers, no nothing. We lost and Malaysia fully deserved it. It’s not about what might have happened, it is about what will happen next. One thing for sure, Garuda fought back and won the game tonight, the effort will never be forgotten by us Indonesians and we will keep shouting #NurdinTurun .