Thailand 2020 fan zones a major hit with fans and sponsors
Bangkok: With the AFC U23 Thailand Championship nearing its thrilling knockout stages, the exciting build-up has been underlined both on and off the pitch with thousands of fans participating in a wide range of exciting activations.
Finding their way into the hearts of thousands of supporters in Thailand are the competition’s two fan zones at the Rajamangala Stadium and Thammasat Stadium in the country’s capital of Bangkok, which has been designed to unleash the passion for football and to celebrate Asia’s stars of tomorrow.
Bangkok: Head coach Graham Arnold believes Australia can take advantage of an extra day’s rest to book a place in the semi-finals of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 when they face Syria at Rajamangala Stadium on Saturday.
The Olyroos sealed their place in the last eight as winners of Group A with a 1-1 draw against Bahrain on Tuesday to ensure Arnold’s team had additional recovery time ahead of their meeting with Ayman Hakeem’s side on Saturday.
“Our focus is just one game at a time,” said Arnold. “Our team has been improving in every game, from the first game to the game against Bahrain. I expect that tomorrow we will also have a great performance after the one extra day of recovery.”
Bangkok: Akira Nishino will delve deep into his coaching past for inspiration as he looks to lead hosts Thailand past Saudi Arabia and into the semi-finals of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 at Thammasat Stadium on Saturday.
Nishino famously led his native Japan to the Finals of the Olympic Games in 1996, ending the country’s 28-year exile from the competition with a landmark victory over Saudi Arabia in the qualifying tournament for the Atlanta Olympiad in Kuala Lumpur.
Now, almost 24 years later, he comes face-to-face with the same opponents with designs on leading Thailand into the last four and a step closer to claiming one of the three tickets available for this summer’s Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Bangkok: As the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 enters the knockout stage, the eight remaining teams will be targeting not just Continental glory but also the three tickets available to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Having survived a tough group campaign, the teams will be aiming to move one step closer to realising their dream of lifting the trophy and sealing berths in the Olympics.
Join the-AFC.com as we take a look at a key player from each team ahead of this weekend's quarter-finals.
Thailand 2020 - Vote for your Goal of the Group Stage
Bangkok: With the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 moving into the crucial knockout stage, we reflect on some of the best goals from the group stage and ask you the fans to select your favourite.
Long-range screamers, stunning free-kicks and superb team moves, the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 group stage saw goals from all angles and distances to delight lovers of Asian football across the Continent.
Al Ghassani urges UAE to work harder to realise Olympic dream
Buriram: Yahya Al Ghassani is confident United Arab Emirates have what it takes to reach the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 final after they finished top of Group D following a 1-1 draw with Jordan on Thursday.
Zayed Al Ameri's 41st minute strike gave UAE the lead but Jordan came back fighting in the second half to level the score late in the game through Ihab Ali Al.
UAE topped the table on goal difference ahead of Jordan while the group’s other tie saw DPR Korea stun Vietnam 2-1 to finish third.
Atieh: Jordan are closer to realising Tokyo 2020 dream
Buriram: Jordan’s Mohammad Bani Atieh believes there’s room for improvement after seeing his side finish second in Group D of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 following their 1-1 draw against the United Arab Emirates on Thursday.
Ahmed Abu Ismail’s charges had their work cut out for them against UAE after falling behind to Zayed Al Ameri’s strike going into the break.
But a late equaliser from defender Ihab Ali Al ensured Jordan finished second in the standings on five points behind UAE on goal difference.