KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 30 -- Malaysia lost 0-1 to world number 99 Jordan in a Tier 1 international friendly at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil here tonight, less than a week before they take on Indonesia in their Group G opener of the 2022 World Cup/2023 Asia Cup.
Jordan’s winning goal was scored by skipper Saeed Murjan just after sixth minutes of play when the 29-year-old midfielder easily tapped in a cross past national goalkeeper Farizal Marlias.
‘The Chilvarous’, playing without several key players including Apoel’s winger Musa Al-Taamari, almost made it two nil but Saleh Rateb’s shot in the 18th minute was blocked by defender Shahrul Mohd Saad.
Malaysia failed to produce any dangerous attacks and had to wait until the 40th minute before Johor Darul Ta’zim’s (JDT) star Muhammad Safawi Rasid fired a powerful shot but it went wide.
However, Malaysia started strongly in the second half and experienced striker Norshahrul Idlan Talah had a golden chance to put Harimau Malaya level but his effort was saved by goalkeeper Yazeed Abulaila.
National head coach Tan Cheng Hoe was forced to make six changes, bringing in Muhammad Syafiq Ahmad, J. Partiban, Ahmad Hazwan Bakri, Muhammad Shahrel Fikri, Muhammad Akram Mahinan and Muhammad Syahmi Safari, as the team went in search of an equaliser.
Ahmad Hazwan, who spent almost all of the Malaysian Super League campaign this season with JDT in the bench, tried to prove his critics wrong.
He almost scored but his shot was brilliantly blocked by Yazeed in the 63rd minute.
However, it’s a good sign for Cheng Hoe’s boys before they lock horns against Indonesia at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium on Sept 5 as Garuda had been trashed 4-1 by Jordan in an international friendly last June.