Qualifiers - Group I: Japan qualify in style
Yangon: Japan sealed their place in the Finals as they flexed their muscles to defeat Myanmar 7-0 on Matchday Three of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 Qualifiers at the Thuwunna Stadium on Tuesday.
JAPAN 7-0 MYANMAR
The win gave Japan maximum points as they topped the Group I table while Myanmar settled for second.
The young Samurai Blue raced off the blocks and quickly settled into the game with two goals in 10 minutes from Daizen Maeda.
Japan could have made it three at the 15th minute mark but Maeda missed his effort from close range as Myanmar scrambled at the back.
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However, the floodgates sprung wide open as Myanmar conceded again three minutes later with Yuto Iwasaki’s effort as Japan took a 3-0 lead.
Myanmar tried their best to find gaps but came up empty as Japan were quick to close down the spaces.
Yuta Nakayama made it 4-0 in the 38th minute after connecting to a corner before Maeda sealed his hat-trick six minutes later as Japan took a comprehensive 5-0 lead at the break.
Myanmar, however, didn’t give up and came close to scoring five minutes after the restart when Win Naing Tun timed his run to perfection but his strike was denied by the crossbar.
Unfazed by Myanmar’s boost of confidence Japan came close to scoring five minutes later but goalkeeper San Satt Naing did his best to deny the East Asians.
With less than 20 minutes left, Japan turned up the tempo and scored two more goals, with Iwasaki (69th) and Nakayama (79th) both finding the target to make it 7-0.
TIMOR LESTE 5-3 LAOS
Timor-Leste held off a late Macau fightback to notch their first victory in an eight-goal thriller on Matchday Three in the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 Qualifiers at the Thuwunna Stadium on Tuesday.
Despite having no chance of make the Finals, both teams delivered their best on the field with Timor-Leste winning 5-3 while Macau will return home without a point.
Timor Leste, who lost both their opening matches and had yet to score in open play, broke their duck in the third minute courtesy of an own goal by Wan Tin Iao.
Norio Tsukitate’s charges dominated the match and increased their advantage two minutes before the break through Rufino Walter Gama.
Macau came back fighting in the second half and scored two quick goals, a penalty in the 63rd minute via Augusto Neves Jeronimo followed by Leung Chi Seng’s equaliser three minutes later to put the score at 2-2.
Unfazed by Macau’s sudden resurgence, Timor Leste’s Danilson Araujo fired them into the lead again in the 67th minute, before Enrique Cruz restored the two-goal cushion in the 79th minute.
Macau, however, did not give up and scored their third goal five minutes from time through Leong Hou In but Timor Leste added the fifth after Araujo found the net in added time to seal the victory.
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