Match Previews

2016 Suzuki Cup Preview: Indonesia

Placed in the Group of Death, can Indonesia advance out of the group stages and finally lift their first-ever AFF Suzuki Cup title?

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The Lowdown

Suzuki Cup 2016 preview

There are not many times when a nation of the stature of Indonesia gets a free pass at a tournament as important as the AFF Suzuki Cup.

This is a country that has been to four finals and won none. There is a desperation to take the trophy, but not this time. The year-long FIFA ban may have ended in May but the effects are still being felt.

It is sad. In a year of Leicester City and the Chicago Cubs, Indonesia are not in a position to really challenge.

Fans are happy just to be in the competition at all. Being placed in such a tough group in some ways makes it easier;

There is no reason to focus on the short-term. This is about getting back into the international arena and building something for the future.

But while expectations are low, hopes are always high. The team has only played three friendlies since March 2015, but has been better than expected. There was a 3-0 win over Malaysia in September and draws with Vietnam and Myanmar that all showed Indonesia can at least be competitive on the regional stage. For now, that is enough.