Thailand, Indonesia top 2022 AFF Championship Group A

2020 AFF Championship finalists Thailand and Indonesia advance to the knockout round of this year’s tournament by leading Group A at the end of the group stage. They await which teams will emerge from Group B.

The reigning champs notched first seed with a superior tiebreaker over the Garuda. The Thais will face the second place team of the other group.

AFF Mitsubishi Electric Cup’s (formerly known as AFF Suzuki Cup) winningest squad started the tourney hot with a 5-0 thrashing of Brunei Darussalam in a neutral venue followed by a 4-0 beating of the Philippines at the Thammasat Stadium.

Meanwhile, Indonesia endured a scare from Cambodia before prevailing, 2-1. They then proceeded to wallop Brunei, 7-0.

The two contenders met on 29 December with neither side coming up on top. Naturalized footballer Marc Klok converted on a penalty at the 50th minute before Sarach Yooyen tied the count 29 minutes later.

Both concluded their group round campaigns with victories. The Changsuek eliminated the Angkor warriors of Cambodia, thanks to a brace by Teerasil Dangda, while the Merah Putih defeated the Azkals in the latters’ home pitch, 2-1.

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JP Abcede is a veteran sportswriter who has covered football, basketball, pro wrestling, and other sports for a variety of publications. Aside from sports, he also likes music and reading.