Nasaf’s Kaluđerović relieved to advance in AFC Cup thriller against Ahal
Karshi: Nasaf’s Serbian forward Andrija Kaluđerović declared his relief after the Uzbek side advanced to the 2021 AFC Cup Inter-Zone Semi-final with a 3-2 win against Turkmenistan’s FC Ahal on Wednesday.
The hosts looked set for a comprehensive win when Kaluđerović added to Marko Stanojević’s superb opener to make it 2-0 before half-time, but Ahal came storming back into the match with two Elman Tagayev goals in the space of nine second-half minutes.
A successfully converted 76th-minute penalty kick from Nasaf youngster Khusain Norchaev finally settled the tie in favour of the Uzbekistan Super League outfit, maintaining their perfect record in this year’s competition and keeping alive their bid to add to the AFC Cup title they won in 2011.
AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar: Focus on
Kuala Lumpur: The final lap on the AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar is about to begin for 12 of Asia’s best national teams, with the action to kick off on September 2.
With four direct qualification spots up for grabs, and the continent’s top players and coaches going all out to turn their dreams into reality, join us as we preview the contenders.
Here we examine Australia, the now-habitual FIFA World Cup participants who overcame a range of difficulties to establish a perfect record in their qualifying campaign thus far, but who will need to stare down all new challenges in order to keep it.
AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar: Focus on Korea Republic
Kuala Lumpur: The AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar are just around the corner and the continent's best are gearing up for a series of matches that are sure to put on display the talent and ability Asian football has to offer.
The-AFC.com dives deep into the 12 nations who will be taking part in the upcoming festival of football assessing and analysing the key men, highlighting the history, and giving a general insight into the teams battling out for a place at Qatar 2022.
Perennial powerhouse Korea Republic will not just be hoping for, but expecting qualification to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 with a track record at the Asian Qualifiers that bears testament to that confidence.
AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar: Focus on Japan
Kuala Lumpur: The COVID-19 pandemic has delayed the start of the AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar by a year, but the battle for one of the four guaranteed berths at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will ramp up in September when the continent’s 12 leading nations battle for a spot at the finals.
While AFC Asian Cup holders Qatar have already claimed a place as the FIFA World Cup hosts, the top two nations in each of the continent’s two qualifying groups will also advance to the Finals while the third-placed finishers will enter into a playoff to potentially claim a further spot for Asia.
Here we take a look at the prospects of Japan, the top seeds in Group B and habitual qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup.
AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar: Focus on IR Iran
Kuala Lumpur: The main event is just days away from kicking off, as the continent’s top dozen sides gear up for the AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar.
Over the coming days, the-AFC.com will break down each of the 12 nations still standing, their key men and what it all means in the context of history as they vie for a ticket to the greatest show on earth.
A true powerhouse of the Asian game, Islamic Republic of Iran are targeting a third successive FIFA World Cup appearance and their exceptional strike force makes them one of the favourites to qualify.
Shomurodov, Iwabuchi, Jahanbakhsh & more: Vote for your AFC International Player of the Week
Kuala Lumpur: The goals, saves and standout performances came thick and fast over the last week as Asian players plying their trade outside the continent continued to star.
There was debut delight for Eldor Shomurodov, Kim Min-jae and Mana Iwabuchi as well as a goalkeeping masterclass from Amir Abedzadeh, while several players left their mark on the continental stage in Europe.
But which of Asia’s stars shone brightest of all? Study our shortlist – based on performances in competitive matches from August 18 to 24 – and don’t forget to register your vote.
Lopez credits ATK Mohun Bagan's resilience after reaching AFC Cup knockout stage
Male: ATK Mohun Bagan head coach Antonio Lopez praised his side's tireless efforts in reaching the 2021 AFC Cup Inter-Zone semi-finals after their draw with Bashundhara Kings on Tuesday.
Bashundhara, needing to win to advance, took the lead in the 28th minute through Fernandes’ right-footed effort but the Bangladesh champions then suffered a blow with Sushanto Tripura being sent off just before half-time.
ATK Mohun Bagan capitalised in the second half with David Williams equalising in the 62nd minute.
The result meant that undefeated ATK Mohun Bagan completed their Group D campaign with seven points, while Bashundhara made their exit with five points.