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Indonesian soccer kicks off with new goals

Indonesia fans gather outside Philippines Sports Stadium in Manila ahead of the team's opening game of the AFF Suzuki Cup against Thailand on Nov. 19. (Photo by John Duerden)

MANILA -- Indonesia's first competitive soccer game in two years may have ended in a 4-2 defeat against a talented Thai team on Nov. 19 but the country's soccer future looks considerably better than its recent past.

Just being present in the Philippines at the AFF Suzuki Cup, Southeast Asia's premier international tournament, was a good start. Indonesia has been excluded from international soccer since May 2015, when it was banned by the Federation Internationale de Football Association.

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