Posted on July 18th, 2019
In light of the recent news that Indonesia and Australia are considering a joint bid to host the 2034 World Cup, the Asian team are well and truly in the spotlight as of late. Despite a poor World Cup record that has only seen them qualify once, back in 1938, it is often far too easy to overlook some of the incredible talent within the country and it’s leading teams. With plenty of respectable results in the AFF Championships, the AFC Asian Cup and the Asian Games, there are some incredible players to consider and here, we’re taking a look at not only the leading teams currently active in Indonesia but the top 11 players for your starting line-up.
The Top 3 Teams
Just like the UK has the Premier League and its national team, Indonesia has something very similar in the form of their own national team and their league, Liga 1. They also have their standout teams, just like the UK has “The Big Four” and here, you can find three of the best:
Indonesia National Football Team
As you might expect, the Indonesia National Football Team is made up of the best of the best. They’ve only been representing the country in international matches since 1945, after they declared independence from the Dutch East Indies national football team and while they’ve had a rocky existence, they seem to be getting to grips with their reputation in recent years, appeasing tipsters and bettors alike. They’ve secured wins at two of their three friendlies, against Myanmar and Vanuatu in March and June respectively, and are set to take part in the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers in September.
Step away from the national team and the next best teams you’ll find will rest in the Liga 1. Despite currently sitting at number 12 in the Liga 1, the long-term success of Persipura Jayapura makes them one of the most successful clubs in Indonesian history. Securing three Liga 1 wins, and 3 runner-up positions in recent years (2008-2014), the success has been unrivalled thus far. The team have produced some of the greatest players not just in Indonesia, but for international teams too, including Jack Komboy, Rully Nere, Boaz Solossa and Imanual Wanggai.
Arema F.C, also known as Singo Edan, or ‘The Mad Lions’, is the second most successful team in Indonesian football history, though with only one Liga 1 win, and two runner-up positions. They’ve also secured wins at the Indonesia President’s Cup, taking the Champion position in 2017 and 2019. Some of their recent matches have also seen significant wins, with a match against Persipura securing them a 3-1 win.
The Greatest Players
To make great teams, you have to have great players and thankfully, Indonesia has its fair share. Within the national team and on loan internationally, these are some of the leading players for your starting lineup:
- Sergio Van Dijk – Forward/Centre-Forward Sergio Van Dijk is one of the country’s best scorers, with 40 goals in the A-League and 4 in the AFC Champions League.
- Hansamu Yama – With three international goals to his name at the tender age of 24, Hansamu Yama Pranata has proven himself a worthy ‘one to watch’ within the Indonesian National Team.
- Irfan Bachdim – 30-year-old forward, Irfan Bachdim, is one of the most experienced players on the Indonesian national team. With 35 national team apps and 11 goals, as well as an additional 11 international goals, he’s certainly one of the best goal scorers around.
- Evan Dimas – With the nickname Anak Ajaib (Wonderkid), Evan Dimas is one of the most talented young players around. The midfielder has secured 4 national goals over his time in the Indonesian national team, with 2 of them taking place just this year.
- Andritany Ardhiyasa – The current captain of the Indonesian team, Ardhiyasa is a clear choice for any Indonesian starting lineup. He currently plays for Liga 1 club Perdija Jakarta too and has been active as a senior player in the sport since 2007.
- Rizky Pora – Defender, Rizky Pora, currently wears the number 11 shirt for the Indonesian National team and while he’s only scored one goal in the past season, his potential alone is enough to garner attention.
- Andik Vermansyah – Midfielder Andik Vermansyah is thought to be one of Indonesia’s greatest talents of all time, even voted as one of the ten Asian players to watch by ESPN. He’s seen 18 goals over his 5-year career, including 2 international goals, and is showing no signs of slowing down.
- Beto Goncalves – He might’ve only been part of the team for two years, but Beto Goncalves, but with 8 goals in that short period of time, he’s certainly providing he’s worth of the striker position
- Zulfiandi – Zulfandi may only have two goals to his name in his career, but as a midfielder, his talents are undeniable and his position on the Indonesian National Team is a sure sign of this.
- Achmad Jufriyanto – At 32 years of age, Jufriyanto has been in the business for quite some time now, but to this day, his experience and skill as a defender are undeniable.
- Hendro Kartiko – Considering his retirement, Hendro Kartiko is a dream-team pipe dream, but as one of the best goalkeepers Indonesia has ever seen, it’d be criminal to leave him out here. He currently works as a coach for Arema Indonesia, so his incredible skill certainly isn’t going to waste.
While Indonesia has plenty of players to choose from, these 11 are some of the best players available today. Who will you choose for your starting lineup?