Group B - MD3: Saudi Arabia top group, Syria through
Bangkok: Table-topping Saudi Arabia guaranteed their place in the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 quarter-finals on Wednesday courtesy of a 1-0 win over Syria who will join them in the last eight thanks to their second-place finish in Group B.
After beating Japan on Matchday One and drawing with Qatar last time out, Feras Al Birakan’s accomplished strike helped secure Saudi Arabia’s second victory of the campaign to leave them at the summit, three points clear of their West Asian rivals.
With Qatar and Japan both going home following their 1-1 draw in the group’s other game, Saudi Arabia will now meet Group A runners-up Thailand on Saturday, with Syria scheduled to meet Australia, the Group A winners, on the same day.
Bangkok: Ten-man Japan held on to claim their first point of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 on Wednesday as Hajime Moriyasu’s side earned a 1-1 draw against Qatar that meant the two-time semi-finalists missed out on a place in the knockout rounds.
Felix Sanchez’s side needed to win to advance to the quarter-finals for the third tournament in a row but a resolute performance by Japan, despite Ao Tanaka’s sending off in the dying seconds of the first half, ensured the 2016 champions salvaged a draw.
The Japanese went into the final Group B match looking to reclaim some pride having been eliminated from contention for a place in the next phase following back-to-back defeats in their opening games against Saudi Arabia and Syria.
Buriram: UAE head coach Maciej Skorza is focused on recovery ahead of his side’s decisive AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 Group D clash against Jordan on Thursday.
The Whites currently top the group with four points from a goalless draw against Vietnam and a 2-0 victory over DPR Korea, meaning a point against Jordan is all they need to advance to the quarter-finals.
Bangkok: Vietnam head coach Park Hang-seo wants to end his side’s group stage on a high even as they know their fate is out of their hands ahead of their final AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 Group D fixture against DPR Korea on Thursday.
Vietnam travelled to Bangkok for their last group game in the knowledge that should UAE and Jordan play out a score draw, the outcome of their game against already-eliminated DPR Korea would be rendered irrelevant and the 2018 runners-up would exit at the first stage.
It’s not over yet for Vietnam, says Tran Dinh Trong
Buriram: Tran Dinh Trong insists that Vietnam are still in contention to advance to the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 quarter-finals despite their 0-0 draw against Jordan in Group D on Monday.
Jordan dominated the tie and had several goal scoring opportunities with Yazan Al Nuaimat placing his header just wide 10 minutes before the break.
Vietnam, meanwhile, had their first real chance through substitute Ha Duc Chinh with the forward’s half-volley in the 83rd minute foiled by Jordan goalkeeper Abdullah Al Fakhori as the points were shared.
Bangkok: Head coach Akira Nishino believes his Thailand players have proved themselves more than capable of competing with Asia’s finest after they reached the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 quarter-finals following Tuesday’s 1-1 draw with Iraq.
Jaroensak Wonggorn’s first-half penalty ultimately proved enough for the Thais to advance to the last eight as runners-up in Group A following last week’s win over Bahrain and loss to table-topping Australia.
With Thailand now set to face the winners of Group B in the knockout phase, Nishino wasted little time in praising his charges after a night of high drama at the Rajamangala Stadium.
Arnold expects a stronger Australia in quarter-finals
Bangkok: A relieved Graham Arnold stressed his players needed to make significant improvements after Australia’s 1-1 draw with Bahrain on Tuesday evening earned the Olyroos top spot in Group A and a place in the quarter-finals of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020.
The Australians will meet the runners-up from Group B in the last eight on Saturday after sharing the points with Bahrain, who exited the competition with two points from their three group matches.