The crucial final round of group stage action at the 2020 AFF Suzuki Cup arrives this weekend where dreams will be made, hopes will be dashed, careers can be enhanced or ended.

In Group A, top spot is on the line as hosts Singapore meet Thailand in an epic clash at the National Stadium whilst over in Group B it’s a three-way battle for just two semifinal spots with Indonesia, Vietnam and Malaysia all hoping to survive a cutthroat final round of action.

We’ve highlighted half a dozen players who could be crucial to their nation’s hopes of survival, progress or development and now it’s your turn to decide who is the key player to watch as the group stage comes to a close.

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Teerathon Bunmathan (Thailand)

Those who thought that the Thai star might be jaded following a long domestic campaign in Japan were dead wrong as Teerathon has been a crucial presence for Thailand both in attack and defence from his marauding post at leftback.

Just as importantly, he’s a deadly presence from set-piece situations and with Singapore strong defensively this might be the avenue that sees the War Elephants unlock the hosts.

Ikhsan Fandi (Singapore)

With good close control on the ground and a dangerous presence in the air, Ikhsan has quickly become the leading goal threat for Singapore.

If the Lions are to jolt Thailand from top spot in Group A they know they have to score and there’s no man more likely than the towering forward who’s a deadly threat from set-piece situations.

Soeuy Visal (Cambodia)

Cambodia are unable to reach the semifinals but they’re very much able to play spoilers, knowing that an upset win over the defending champions could possibly eliminate Vietnam from the tournament and send shockwaves through the Southeast Asian football world.

They’ve vowed to keep playing their brand of possession-based football and try and stun Vietnam but it’s likely that they’ll also face strong pressure defensively and one man who is crucial to their hopes of keeping things tight at the back is captain Soeuy Visal, a vastly experienced and calm presence for the Koupreys.

Safawi Rasid (Malaysia)

After a relatively quiet domestic campaign, Malaysia’s star man has been on fire at the 2020 AFF Suzuki Cup.

With four goals already to his name, he’s the joint top scorer at the tournament and with only a win being good enough to secure Malaysia’s progression through to the last four there’s no question that Safawi is the key man in both creating and finishing chances for Harimau Malaya.

Nguyen Quang Hai (Vietnam)

Anything other than a surprise defeat against Cambodia will be enough to secure Vietnam’s passage to the semifinals but they’ve shown at this tournament that they’re willing to set the tempo and look for goals regardless of the opposition.

It’s no surprise that one of Southeast Asian football’s biggest stars has been at the heart of much of their best work and Quang Hai will again be looking to showcase all of his qualities here, with his wand of a left foot constantly creating scoring opportunities, his vision and composure on the ball freeing up others and his overall presence ensuring that defenders need to be constantly aware of his movement.

Evan Dimas (Indonesia)


Indonesia head into their final group stage match against Malaysia knowing that a draw will be enough to see them reach the last four.

That could likely see a tactical approach where they look to control possession and one man who will be key in that scenario is central midfielder Evan Dimas.

The Garuda captain has been in fine form so far at the tournament with excellent movement, positioning and passing and he could be the key to both unlocking and restraining Malaysia.