Second-half changes key, says Daboub after Palestine edge Mongolia
Ulaanbaatar: Head coach Makram Daboub admitted that substitutions made in the second half of Palestine’s narrow 1-0 win over Mongolia paid dividends after the West Asians got their AFC Asian Cup 2023™ Qualifiers Final Round Group B campaign off to a winning start at MFF Stadium on Wednesday.
With three matches in seven days, Daboub left a number of key personnel on the bench against the hosts, with the top scorer from the previous round, Portugal-based Oday Dabbagh, among those omitted from the starting line-up.
Hwang expects a more clinical Korea Republic in knockout stage
Tashkent: Korea Republic secured their AFC U23 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2022 quarter-final spot after edging Thailand 1-0 at the Pakhtakor Stadium on Wednesday but head coach Hwang Sun-hong believes there is plenty of room for improvement.
Go Jae-hyeon’s 35th-minute strike sealed the win for the defending champions against a resolute Thailand, who were also in the running for a knockout stage berth, and Hwang congratulated his players for achieving their target with Korea Republic topping Group C on seven points.
Hai Long eyes more playing time after helping Vietnam into quarter-finals
Tashkent: Nguyen Hai Long was trusted by head coach Gong Oh-kyun to start Vietnam’s final AFC U23 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2022 Group C tie against Malaysia on Wednesday and the midfielder repaid the faith in him by producing a player of the match performance.
Although Hai Long did not get on the scoresheet, he played a pivotal role in Vietnam’s 2-0 win which saw the 2018 runners-up finishing second behind Korea Republic to advance to the quarter-finals at Thailand’s expense.
Boosted by his performance, the 21-year-old is now hoping for more playing time as Vietnam look to extend their Uzbekistan 2022 adventure, with the Group D winners their opponents in the quarter-finals.
Kuwait City: Two second-half goals secured the three points for Jordan in a 2-0 victory over Nepal on Matchday One of Group A of the AFC Asian Cup 2023™ Qualifiers Final Round at Jaber Al Ahmad Stadium on Wednesday.
The win gave Jordan the early lead in Group A, with Indonesia level on points with the West Asians following their 2-1 win over hosts Kuwait in the earlier match.
Qualifiers Final Round Group A: Kuwait 1-2 Indonesia
Kuwait City: Indonesia got off to a winning start, defeating the AFC Asian Cup™ 2023 Qualifiers Group A hosts Kuwait 2-1 at Jaber Al Ahmed International Stadium on Wednesday.
The home side started brightly and came within a whisker of opening the scoring inside five minutes when midfielder Omar Al Hebaitir took possession of a loose clearance 30 yards out and curled an effort, but watched the ball just brush the top of the netting.
Qualifiers Final Round Group D: India 2-0 Cambodia
Kolkata: Sunil Chhetri took his international tally to 82 goals on Wednesday as he scored twice in India’s 2-0 win over Cambodia at Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata in their AFC Asian Cup 2023™ Qualifiers Final Round Group D opener.
The 37-year-old claimed a goal in each half to give Igor Stimac’s side all three points, ensuring the group hosts keep pace with Hong Kong following the earlier win by Jorn Andersen’s outfit over Afghanistan.
Only the group winners are sure to advance to the Finals, where they will be joined at the 24-team showpiece by the five runners-up with the best records across the six qualifying groups.
Qualifiers Final Round Group E: Turkmenistan 1-3 Malaysia
Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia got their AFC Asian Cup 2023™ Qualifiers Final Round Group E off to a winning start with a 3-1 victory against Turkmenistan at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium on Wednesday.
Seeking to qualify for the Continental showpiece for the first time since co-hosting the 2007 Finals, Malaysia produced a sterling performance to see off a Turkmenistan side who had featured in the 2019 edition.
Qualifiers Final Round Group F: Kyrgyz Republic 2-1 Singapore
Bishkek: Kyrgyz Republic came from behind to secure a crucial 2-1 win over Singapore in their opening AFC Asian Cup™ – Final Round Qualifiers Group F clash at Dolen Omurzakov Stadium on Wednesday.
A Song Ui-young goal early in the second half looked to have set the visitors up for a shock win, but Alexander Krestinin’s side squared the ledger with a Valeriy Kichin penalty, before substitute Viktor Maier found a winner with just under 10 minutes remaining.
The result takes Kyrgyz Republic to second on the Group F table after one of three Matchdays in Bishkek, with the group winners and five best runners-up across the six groups being held across Asia to reach the Continental Finals.