Thu, 28 Oct, 2021
Dhaka: Uzbekistan got their AFC U-23 Championship 2016 qualifying campaign off to a winning start with a 2-0 defeat of India on Friday but Bakhtiyor Ashurmatov’s side left it perilously late to pick all three points from the Group E curtain raiser.
Neither side was able to make the break through at the Bangabandhu National Stadium until three minutes from the end of the 90 when Igor Sergeev, who scored the winner for the senior team in their 1-0 win over DPR Korea at the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, put the Central Asians 1-0 up before Sergeev’s Pakhtakor team-mate and captain of the Uzbekistan U-23s Vladimir Kozak gave the score line a more flattering perspective two minutes into stoppage time.
Both sides are next in action on Sunday when Uzbekistan take on Group E hosts Bangladesh while India look to get their campaign back on track when they face Syria in the earlier fixture.
Ten group winners and five best second-placed teams from all groups will join hosts Qatar at the AFC U-23 Championship 2016, with January’s 16-team competition also serving as Asia’s qualifying tournament for the Olympic Games in Rio.