Azkals bow out of Suzuki Cup semis
Mark Escarlote on Dec 10, 2014 10:20 PM
The Philippine Azkals bow out of 2014 Suzuki Cup semifinals after a 0-3 defeat at the hands of Thailand War Elephants.
Toothless in their offense without two of their top strikers, home team Thailand War Elephants found a messiah in Chanathip Songkrasin and Kroekrit Thawikan acted as the executioner.
The Thai duo delivered the winning goals Wednesday night to take the War Elephants into the 2014 Suzuki Cup finals and left the Philippine Azkals licking their wounds after another heartbreak, 0-3, in the second leg of their semifinals match at the jam packed Rajamangala Stadium.
Thawikan finished what Songkrasin started in the first half, slotting in a brace in the 57th and 86th minute for the Thais, who played minus Kirati Keawsombat (hamstring injury) and Adisak Kraisorn (suspended).
The first leg in Manila last Saturday ended with a scoreless draw.
Songkrasin broke the ice with an early dagger in the sixth minute, pouncing inside the box.
The Azkals tried to equalize before halftime but failed to convert.
Thailand kept their pressure until the second half, creating chances through short passes and better possessions.
Thawikan, the 24-year old midfielder, saw an opening in the Azkals defense and attacked aggressively towards the box. He slid past Simone Rota before beating Filipino keeper Patrick Deyto for Thailand's second goal.
The Azkals were down to 10 men when Martin Steuble was flagged with a red card and sent off in the 82nd minute.
Thailand took advantage and Thawikan pounded the last nail in the coffin with a right-footer.
The War Elephants will face the survivor between Vietnam and Malaysia.
For the third time in the last three editions, the Azkals will fly home empty handed.