AFC U-23 Championship Group Stage Round-Up

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Three Arab nations make it to the quarter finals

The AFC U-23 Championship Group Stage concluded today with South Korea facing Australia and Syria playing Vietnam in Group D to determine the final two qualifiers for the quarter-final stage of the competition, which will kick off on January the 19th.

South Korea beat Australia 3-2 to secure top spot of their group and were followed by Vietnam who managed a 0-0 draw with Syria; enough for the Golden Dragons to finish in 2nd place with 4 points as they pipped Australia in 3rd place by a point.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 South Korea 3 2 1 0 5 3 +2 7
2 Vietnam 3 1 1 1 2 2 0 4
3 Australia 3 1 0 2 5 5 0 3
4 Syria 3 0 2 1 1 3 -2 2

Group A saw hosts China eliminated with only 1 win in 3 games, which came in the first matchweek against Oman in front of a crowd of 11,800. This, however, did not propel them to a top two finish, when they lost to eventual qualifiers Uzbekistan 1-0 and Qatar 2-1 respectively. Qatar’s Almoez Ali starred for them, scoring in the 1-0 win against Uzbekistan and a brace against hosts China.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 Qatar 3 3 0 0 4 1 +3 9
2 Uzbekistan 3 2 0 1 2 1 +1 6
3 China PR 3 1 0 2 4 3 +1 3
4 Oman 3 0 0 3 0 5 -5 0

Japan topped Group B with a 100% record, followed by Palestine in 2nd place with 4 points, overcoming North Korea (4 points) on goal difference. As North Korea beat Thailand 1-0 in the first matchweek and drew with Palestine 1-1 in the second matchweek, it all went down on the final matchweek. Palestine thrashed Thailand 5-1, coupled with a 3-1 defeat of North Korea against Japan (compared to Palestine’s 1-0 loss in the first matchweek) helped Palestine qualify with a goal difference of +3.

AFC U-23 Championship

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 Japan 3 3 0 0 5 1 +4 9
2 Palestine 3 1 1 1 6 3 +3 4
3 North Korea 3 1 1 1 3 4 -1 4
4 Thailand 3 0 0 3 1 7 -6 0

Finally, in Group C came three Arabian teams in Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Iraq. However, only one of the qualified for the next round – Iraq – who defeated Malaysia 4-1 and Jordan 1-0 alongside a 0-0 draw with Saudi Arabia to top the group with 7 points. Following them was Malaysia, who after losing to Iraq in the first matchweek, drew with Jordan in the next matchweek and shockingly beat Saudi Arabia 1-0 on the final day.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 Iraq 3 2 1 0 5 1 +4 7
2 Malaysia 3 1 1 1 3 5 -2 4
3 Jordan 3 0 2 1 3 4 -1 2
4 Saudi Arabia 3 0 2 1 2 3 -1 2

The quarter-final match-ups:

Match Date Stadium
Qatar vs. Palestine 19-1-2018 | 19:30 (China Time) Changzou Olympic Sports Centre
Japan vs. Uzbekistan 19-1-2018 | 16:00 Jiangyin Stadium
Iraq vs. Vietnam 20-1-2018 | 19:30 Changshu Stadium
South Korea vs. Malaysia 20-1-2018 | 16:00 Kunshan Stadium

 

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