Indonesia bid to challenge Asia's best by 2020

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KUALA LUMPUR, Sep 12 (Reuters) Indonesia, buoyed by their performance at this year's Asian Cup, want to be among the region's elite soccer-playing countries by 2020.

The Indonesians narrowly failed to reach the Asian Cup quarter-finals after losing 2-1 to eventual runners-up Saudi Arabia and 1-0 to South Korea.

They beat favoured Bahrain 2-1 in their opening group match and their overall performance has created a buzz about the future.

''This is our vision, to be at par with the Asia's best in 2020. With the launch of a full professional Indonesian Super League in March 2008, I see a bright future of Indonesian football,'' Nurdin Halid, president of Indonesia's governing body PSSI, was quoted as saying in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Web site.

Nurdin headed a delegation from Indonesia on a visit to AFC headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, where they were finalising plans to expand the Vision Indonesia programme to raise the standard of soccer in the country at all levels.

REUTERS BJR BST1031

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