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Javad Safari dedicates win to Afghanistan

Tabriz: Afghanistan continued their fairytale run in the AFC U-20 Futsal Championship IR Iran 2019 after reaching their first-ever final, and goalkeeper Mohammad Javad Safari has pledged to make the country proud. 

Afghanistan have been a formidable team in the second edition of the tournament, and made headlines when they reached their first knockout stage as the Group A runners-up, having beaten Hong Kong and putting up a solid challenge in their 3-2 loss to host nation Islamic Republic of Iran.

They had to dig deep in the quarter-final against Thailand,  emerging 3-2 victors.

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Afghanistan had no intention of ending their history making run as they saw off Indonesia 4-3 in the semi-finals to place themselves within reach of Continental glory.

Javad Safari praised his teammates for their efforts and thanked their travelling fans, who have given them the extra boost in motivation.


Semi-final: Afghanistan v Indonesia


“Firstly, I want to thank God for the win,” said Javad Safari.

“I also want to thank my teammates for their hard work and teamwork during the match. I also want to show my appreciation for the fans, who travelled a long way to come and support us.”

Afghanistan are now one match away from clinching their first ever title, but must first go up against Japan in the final on Saturday.

When asked if he feels pressure going against a team with a chequered futsal history, Javad Safari claimed he isn’t as his intentions are clear.

“My performance (against Indonesia) was good but not great, but in the final, I will be better,” said the goalkeeper.

“We are not pressured because our intention is to bring joy to the people in Afghanistan and make them smile.

“We are not going to give up until we bring them that achievement.”

Photos: AFC

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