Qatar U-23 captain confident of qualifying for Tokyo Games

  • 6 months   ago
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Qatar’s U-23 captain Tariq Salman has said his team is confident of making the most of the available opportunities to qualify for the football event at the 2020 Olympic Games.

In the two matches so far, Qatar have managed as many draws in the AFC U-23 Championship - a qualifying event for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo - but play Japan tomorrow in the last of the preliminary match.


With a goalless draw on Sunday, Qatar have two points from two matches. Al Anabi also played a draw against Syria in a game that ended with a 2-2 scorecard.

“We are still in with a chance. Our goal is to get three points from our next match. We haven’t lost a game in this tournament. We have the game against Japan and I am confident our side will come on top,” Salman said yesterday.

“Our target is the quarter-finals berth and we can do it,” he added. Qatar are coached by Felix Sanchez.

“The Qatar side is very confident. We played two tough matches and there are positives to be taken from these two games,” Salman said.

“I think our performance was good against Saudi Arabia. The attacking game was there from our side but we could not score. We were better than our game against Syria last week. We were playing a controlled match,” he added.

“Saudi are a strong side and do well in Asia. It was a tough game but we maintained our composure,” Salman said.

Meanwhile, 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 yesterday, 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.

Coach Ri Yu-il’s men looked to surprise the UAE early on as Ri Chung-gyu spotted goalkeeper Mohammed Al Shamsi off his line and went for the spectacular from 40 yards out, but his effort landed just wide of the upright in the fourth minute.

Al Hammadi then opened the scoring for UAE after 17 minutes. The centre-back expertly controlled Yahia Nader’s chipped pass inside the box on the turn before slotting the ball between the legs of DPR Korea goalkeeper Kang Ju-hyok to score UAE’s first goal of the campaign.

Al Ameri doubled the Whites’ lead at the half-hour mark.

The Al Jazira striker received a cross from his club teammate Abdullah Ramadan, evaded the challenge of a Korean defender and poked the ball into the bottom corner to make it 2-0.

In the last minute of the half DPR Korea thought they had halved the deficit when Kim Hwi-hwang’s cross was swept by Pak Kwang-hun towards the far corner, but defender Saeed Suwaidan popped up to make a goal-line clearance to keep his side two goals in front going into the dressing room.