PHNOM PENH: The tears that flowed down the cheeks of Danial Haqim Draman after the first match of the AFC Under-22 (U-22) Championship against Cambodia showed the midfielder’s regret at being shown two yellow cards which forced Malaysia to play with only 10 men in the second half.
To make things worse, after only three minutes of Danial receiving his marching orders, Cambodia scored the winning goal in the 62nd minute through Sath Rosib for a 1-0 win at the Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh last night (Monday).
Danial, who for the first time was given a starting berth in the first-eleven to help marshal the midfield, explained that he did not expect to be shown two yellow cards because he did not rough up their opponents on purpose.
In fact, he admitted that he was left in tears when given his marching orders by Vietnamese referee Nguyen Hien Triet because he realised that his teammates would face a daunting task in keeping their opponents at bay with only 10 men.
“I am very disappointed for being shown the red card because I couldn’t help the team to get a positive result against the hosts,” he said after the end of Malaysia’s first Group B match while still shedding tears.
Apart from this, the 20-year-old Kelantan player is hoping that the rest of his teammates can remain focused to realise their mission where they now must beat their next opponents Indonesia in their second Group B match tomorrow (Wednesday) to stand a chance of taking up one of the two slots in the group to advance to the semi-finals.
“This is a very valuable lesson for me, so I must bounce back for the next match and improve on my performance to help the team. Insya-Allah we will be able to get a positive result in the next match after this,” he said.