Football in Indonesia

Football is perhaps the most popular sport in Indonesia. It is played on all levels, from children to middle-aged men.[1] Indonesia Super League, the Indonesian domestic league is popular. The national body is the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI).[2] The Indonesian football league started around 1930 in the Dutch colonial era.

Indonesia Football Association

The governing body is the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI).[3] PSSI organises the men's, women's, and futsal national teams, as well as the Indonesian League.[4][1]

Indonesian League System

In 1993, PSSI combined the existing 2 amateur competitions to be a single professional competition for football clubs, known as the Indonesian Football League (Liga Indonesia). From 1994 to 2007, the format of the top division competition was a combination of double round-robin format and a single eliminations second round for several top teams of the table to decide the champions. Starting from 2008-09 season onwards, the competition format changed into a more common system that also being used in most European football leagues. The single elimination round was removed and the competition has become a full double round-robin league system. The name also changed into Indonesia Super League.

National team

On the international stage, Indonesia experienced limited success despite being the first Asian team to qualify for the FIFA World Cup in 1938 as Dutch East Indies.[5] In 1956, the football team played in the Olympics and played a hard-fought 0-0 draw against then footballing superpower USSR with the legendary Lev Yashin playing under the goal for USSR, before losing 0-4 on the replayed match. On the continental level, Indonesia won the bronze medal in men's football at the 1958 Asian Games. Indonesia's first appearance in Asian Cup was back in 1996. With a draw against Kuwait in their first match and two defeats in the following two matches against Korea Republic and the host, UAE, Indonesia finished bottom of group A with a solitary point. In 2000, they again forced a draw against Kuwait, but then lost to China PR and Korea Republic.

In 2004, the national team recorded their first ever win in the Asian Cup against Qatar, but the dreams of the nation of going to the second round were shattered due to the defeats against China PR and Bahrain in the following group games. Indonesia beat Bahrain in 2007 AFC Asian Cup as one of the four co-hosts but the qualification dream was again shattered after two defeats by Asian superpowers Saudi Arabia and for the third time against Korea Republic. However, Indonesia failed to qualify to the 2011 AFC Asian Cup in Qatar after finishing bottom of Group B in the qualifiers without winning any single match.


Some of the major teams include: Persija Jakarta, Persib Bandung, Persebaya Surabaya, PSM Makassar, PSMS Medan, PSIS Semarang, Persik Kediri, Persipura Jayapura, Persiwa Wamena and Arema Malang.

Women's Football

See also


  1. 1 2 Aubrey Belford. "In Indonesia, a Scandal Over Soccer". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-08-15.
  2. "Duerden: Indonesian football in turmoil". Espn Fc. 2012-12-11. Retrieved 2013-08-15.
  3. "Football Every Day » PSSI: Indonesian football in 'such a mess' at the moment". 2013-05-22. Retrieved 2013-08-15.
  4. John Duerden. "The battles facing Indonesian football - Football". Al Jazeera English. Retrieved 2013-08-15.
  5. Tom Allard (2010-06-26). "Indonesian soccer fans' world of pain". Retrieved 2013-08-15.

External links

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