Bangkok: With several sides heading into their final group stage fixtures harbouring hopes of reaching the competition’s quarter-finals, there undoubtedly remains plenty to play for at the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020.
After 2016 runners-up Korea Republic sealed their progress on Matchday Two, seven of the eight knockout spots are still to be confirmed.
Ahead of the action, join the-AFC.com as we take a detailed look at exactly who needs what in order to go through and move one step closer to Continental glory and a place at this year’s Tokyo Olympics.
Buriram: Two first-half goals from Khalifa Al Hammadi and Zayed Al Ameri helped the United Arab Emirates cruise to a 2-0 victory over DPR Korea at Buriram Stadium on Monday, eliminating the East Asians from the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020.
Coming off the back of a defeat by Jordan in their opening game, DPR Korea needed at least a point to keep their qualification hopes alive in the Group D contest.
Buriram: There was plenty of action but no goals at Buriram Stadium as Jordan and Vietnam played out a 0-0 draw on Matchday Two of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 Group D on Monday.
Coach Ahmed Abu Ismail made one change to his Jordan XI that defeated DPR Korea in the opening match, starting Ihab Ali instead of Mohammed Bani Atieh. Meanwhile, Tran Thanh Son replaced Huynh Tan Sinh in coach Park Hang-seo’s Vietnam line-up.
Bangkok: Graham Arnold wants his players to go into their Group A clash with Bahrain at the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 on Tuesday mentally refreshed as they seek the draw that will take the Olyroos into the quarter-finals and keep alive hopes of a place at the Tokyo Olympics.
Arnold’s team followed up an opening round draw against Iraq with a 2-1 win over tournaments hosts Thailand and those results mean a point will be enough to secure a last eight berth for the Australians.
Bangkok: With a place in the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 quarter-finals at stake, head coach Abdulghani Shahad has called on Iraq to produce an improved performance when they face Thailand in Tuesday’s crucial Group A encounter at the Rajamangala Stadium.
After coming from behind on Matchdays One and Two to secure draws against both Australia and Bahrain, Iraq head into the encounter knowing that a win would take them through to the last eight at the expense of the hosts.
Syria's super-subs live up to Hakeem's expectations
Bangkok: Ayman Hakeem hailed the influence of his substitutes as Syria handed Japan a last-gasp 2-1 defeat on Sunday that knocked the former champions out of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 and kept alive the West Asian nation's hopes of a place in the knockout rounds.
Ala’a Aldin Dali came off the bench for the second game in a row to score a decisive goal for Hakeem’s side, netting the winner against Japan three days after scoring a late equaliser against Qatar in Syria’s opening game in Group B.
Songkhla: Islamic Republic of Iran head coach Hamid Estili was left to lament a dip in his side’s first half performance, after they put their AFC U23 Championship quarter-final hopes in jeopardy with a 2-1 defeat to Korea Republic on Sunday.
Team Melli Omid created early chances, but the Koreans took full control of the first half from the 20-minute mark onwards, controlling proceedings and scoring goals through Lee Dong-jun and Cho Gue-sung to take a 2-0 half-time lead.
Reza Shekari pulled a goal back after the interval, but it was a case of too little, too late for Iran, who must now overturn a three-point deficit to second placed Uzbekistan on Matchday Three if they are to salvage a place in the knockout stage.