Iraq bounce back in Asian U-16 C’ship qualifiers; China win - GulfToday

Iraq bounce back in Asian U-16 C’ship qualifiers; China win


Iraq players celebrate their win over Lebanon in the U-16 Championship qualifiers in Bishkek on Friday.

Bishkek: Iraq bounced back from their opening day defeat to edge Lebanon 2-1 in Group F of the AFC U-16 Championship 2020 qualifiers at the Dolen Omurzakov Stadium on Friday.

Iraq lost 1-0 to the UAE on matchday one but produced a strong second half charge against Lebanon, who were edged 3-2 against Kyrgyzstan in their opener.

Both teams were searching for their first wins but neither created goal scoring chances in a listless first half.

Iraq started the second half with more purpose and their persistance paid off in the 64th minute when Abbas Rasool Al Qaraghuli broke the deadlock.

Mohammed Jameel Al Hasani then doubled Iraq’s advantage in the 78th minute but their lead was cut short with Lebanon scoring a consolation through Mahmoud Zbib.

In another match, China collected three more valuable points in Group G after beating Northern Mariana Islands 15-0 on Friday.

China, who had scored 13 unanswerered goals against Brunei Darussalam and the Philippines, continued with their fine form as they opened the scoring within the first four minutes through Zeng Yaozhang, courtesy of Gao Jingchun’s header into the box.

Some nice one-touch passes between Zeng and Cui Xinglong two minutes later saw the striker score his second goal of the night from the same spot.

Gao’s shot in the 17th minute deflected off Zeng and bounced towards Cui, who then made no mistake to make it 3-0.

Gao was at it again 12 minutes later, but NMI goalkeeper Merrick Vicente Toves parried the ball only for Zeng to latch onto the loose ball and hit home to complete his hat-trick.

Huang Peizhao also got into the goalscoring action in the 36th minute before Cui slotted in his second five minutes later, while Chen Diya converted a spot-kick in the 45th minute after NMI’s Jerick Ben Quimzon brought down Zeng in the box.

Less than a minute into the second half, Zeng bagged his fourth goal before Cui became the second player to complete his hat-trick in the 51st minute with a fine header.

Gao eventually found the back of the net two minutes past the hour mark from close range, before Huang completed his hat-trick with back-to-back goals in the 66th and 68th minutes.


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