Thu, 28 Oct, 2021
Bangkok: Uzbekistan will take their first steps in the AFC Women’s Futsal Championship in the knowledge that a win over Turkmenistan on Saturday will book their place in the Knockout Stage.
UZBEKISTAN v TURKMENISTAN
With only three teams in Group D, a positive result against their Central Asian neighbours will secure a place in Wednesday’s quarter-finals, no matter what happens when they meet Islamic Republic of Iran on Monday.
Having seen reigning champions Iran put 14 goals past Turkmenistan, Maksumov said having the day off on Matchday One would benefit his side.
“Yes, I do believe that gives us an advantage to have the opportunity to watch our opponents and study them before our first match,” he said.
Uzbekistan reaching the Knockout Stage would be a first. They were led by Maksumov at the 2015 AFC Women’s Futsal Championship in Malaysia, facing group stage elimination after defeats to Iran and the host nation.
They are also a team with regular futsal experience. In a tournament where many teams feature a mixture of league futsal players and 11-a-sde footballers, Uzbekistan’s team divide their time between both formats.