Hanoi: Philippines’ James Younghusband scored on his 100th appearance for his country last Thursday night against Vietnam, but that proved a consolation as the Azkals bowed out of the semifinals for the fourth time in five AFF Suzuki Cup tournaments.

Younghusband’s 89th-minute` strike at My Dinh Stadium turned out to be a consolation as Vietnam came away with a 2-1 win in the second leg for a 4-2 victory on aggregate to reach the final against Malaysia. 

Entering the match for Carlie De Murga in the second half as the Azkals chased the tie, Younghusband became the second Filipino player to reach 100 caps after younger brother, Phil, achieved the feat against Singapore in their Suzuki Cup opener in Bacolod three weeks ago. 

The older Younghusband was in no mood to celebrate the milestone, saying that he’d rather see the Azkals advance to the finals for the first time rather than finding the back of the net. 

"I’d rather have the team winning,” said James. "It was nice getting to 100 caps. Thank you very much to the players who came up to me and congratulated me. I just wished it was in better circumstances.”

But the veteran, who earned his first cap in 2006 in the AFF Championship Qualifiers against Laos in Bacolod, stressed that all of the Azkals left everything on the pitch in the second leg. 

“Obviously, we are all disappointed with the final result but every player really stepped up and played their hearts out,” said James Younghusband. 

“Players tracked back and worked hard, but Vietnam has a very strong team and they have a good future ahead of them." 

Although they’ve set a target of reaching the final at the start of the tournament, Younghusband said making the semifinals remains a huge accomplishment.

"We’ve had some obstacles, to be honest, but we’ve all come together as a team,” said James. "The coaching staff, the management, the players all came together. Its been a test, but that has been the Suzuki Cup, being professional and getting on with things despite the difficulties."