Indonesia's U-23 Soccer Team Falls to Guinea, Misses Olympic Qualification

Indonesia's U-23 soccer team lost 1-0 to Guinea in a playoff match, dashing their hopes of qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympics men's soccer tournament. Guinea secured the final spot in the Olympic tournament, marking their first appearance in 56 years.

author-image
Nitish Verma
New Update
Indonesia's U-23 Soccer Team Falls to Guinea, Misses Olympic Qualification

Indonesia's U-23 Soccer Team Falls to Guinea, Misses Olympic Qualification

Indonesia's U-23 soccer team suffered a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to Guinea in a crucial playoff match at Clairefontaine, France on Thursday, dashing their hopes of qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympics men's soccer tournament. Guinea's Ilaix Moriba, who plays for Getafe in Spain on loan from Germany's Red Bull Leipzig, scored thedecisive goalfrom the penalty spot to secure his nation the final spot in the Olympic tournament.

The defeat means Indonesia will miss out on theirlastand only participation in the men's tournament came at the 1956 Melbourne Games, where they were eliminated by the Soviet Union. Guinea, on the other hand, will make their first showing at the Olympics in 56 years.

Following theloss, some Indonesian fans directed racist comments at Guinea's players online, prompting an apology from the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI). PSSI executive committee member Arya Mahendra Sinulingga condemned the racist remarks, calling them "very detrimental and embarrassing. ""The players go home with their heads held high and accepted defeat. So, we hope the supporters will do the same,"Sinulingga said. He emphasized that those behind the racist comments were not true supporters and urged fans to back the national team without harming their reputation.

With the victory, Guinea completes the 16-team lineup for the Paris Olympics men's soccer tournament. They will compete in Group A alongside host nation France, the United States, and New Zealand. The qualification of Guinea brings the total number of African teams in the tournament to four, with Egypt, Mali, and Morocco also earning spots.

Guinea head coach Kaba Diawara praised his team's composure and the standout performance of midfielder Aguibou Camara. "We had to maintain our composure [against Indonesia]," Diawara said. "Whoever managed to keep their focus would qualify for the Olympic Games. We did well from that point of view." He singled out Camara as a key player, saying, "It was like we were playing with 12 guys out there, because Aguibou was absolutely everywhere. He's a fantastic football player."

The Men's Olympic Football Tournament at the 2024 Paris Games will kick off on July 24, with the gold medal match scheduled for August 10. Guinea's qualification marks a historic moment for the West African nation as they prepare to showcase their talents on the global stage. Meanwhile, Indonesia's U-23 team will regroup and set their sights on future competitions, aiming to learn from this setback and continue developing their young squad.