Tashkent: Saudi Arabia head coach Saleh Al Mohammedi has challenged his players to produce their best performance when they take on Japan in a do-or-die encounter on Matchday Three of the AFC U20 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan on Thursday.
The young Green Falcons saw their qualification hopes suffer a blow after falling to a 2-0 defeat against China PR, leaving them to go into the final match against Group D leaders Japan with just three points to their name.
The defending champions will be in need of a victory at Lokomotiv Stadium, coupled with China PR failing to overcome Kyrgyz Republic on the other simultaneous kick-off at JAR Stadium if they are to advance to the next round.
Uzbekistan primed for knockout stage, says Khaydarov
Fergana: Head coach Ravshan Khaydarov is looking forward to Uzbekistan’s knockout stage challenge after concluding their AFC U20 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2023 Group A campaign with a goalless draw against Indonesia on Tuesday.
Despite the stalemate at the Istiqlol Stadium, Uzbekistan finished as group winners, while Iraq - who drew 1-1 against Syria - finished second ahead of Indonesia with Syria bottom.
Tashkent: Iraq head coach Emad Mohammed was in a joyful mood after his side squeezed into the AFC U20 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2023 quarter-finals following a 1-1 draw with Syria in their last match of Group A on Wednesday.
Despite a dominant performance, the Lions of Mesopotamia could only find the back of the net once at Lokomotiv Stadium through Hayder Abdulkareem’s second goal of the tournament. The midfielder headed in after Kadhim Raad’s initial header bounced off the crossbar and back into play, but Zakaria Al Ramadan drew Syria level in added time.
The draw was enough for Iraq to qualify to the next round, joining group winners Uzbekistan and pipping Indonesia to second place on head-to-head record.
Fergana: Abdolsamad Marfavi praised Islamic Republic of Iran’s unwavering mindset after his side advanced to the AFC U20 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2023 quarter-finals following a 3-1 win over Vietnam on Tuesday.
Vietnam’s Khuat Van Khang canceled out Mohammad Hazbavi’s first half opener but goals from Saeid Saharkhizan and Mohammad Hosseinnezhad sealed Iran the win and top spot in Group B.
Iran came into the tie needing to bounce back from their 2-1 defeat to Australia on Matchday Two and Marfavi admitted that his side had to endure a very challenging match against their Southeast Asian opponents.
Tashkent: Australia head coach Trevor Morgan believes “the momentum is building” for his Young Socceroos in their quest for the AFC U20 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2023 title as they handed Qatar a 9-1 defeat to confirm their place in the quarter-finals.
Morgan’s side will face hosts Uzbekistan in the last eight on Saturday at Bunyodkor Stadium after a comprehensive win over the West Asian side secured second place in Group B for the Australians.
But while they eventually eased to a comfortable victory, it was Qatar who took an early lead when Moustafa Asar pounced on a defensive mistake to open the scoring inside two minutes.
It was the second time in three games that the Australians had conceded an early goal, having done so in their opening 1-0 loss against Vietnam in Fergana earlier in the tournament, but Morgan had been confident his team would find a way back into the game.
China PR’s Aisikaer proud to have shown true quality against Saudi Arabia
Tashkent: Aifeierding Aisikaer was a picture of delight after a resolute China PR stunned defending champions Saudi Arabia 2-0 to force their way back in the race for a place in the quarter-finals of the AFC U20 Asian Cup™ Uzbekistan 2023 on Monday.
Aisikaer, who was highly critical of his performance in the Matchday One defeat to Japan, was delighted that he was able to display his true form in China’s second Group D match.