Muscat: The hosts Oman will look for the triumph only when they face off Thailand on Sunday in Group G of the AFC U20 Asian Cup Uzbekistan 2023 Qualifiers. The match will kick off at 8:45 pm (Oman time) at Al Saada Sports Complex in Salalah.
The Oman boys managed to start the qualifiers campaign strongly as they blanked Philippines 3-0 in the opening clash. In the following game, they suffered a shock 1-0 defeat against Afghanistan on Friday.
Thailand are leading the group with full points as they impressed against the Philippines and managed to win 3-2 over Philippines on Friday. The leaders stunned Afghanistan 3-0 in the opening round match. Oman and Afghanistan are in second and third places respectively with three points for each team. Oman have a better goal average than Afghanistan while the Philippines are in fourth place with no points.
The Oman national team, coached by Spanish coach David Gordo, have to win against Thailand in Sunday's fixture and the Philippines must defeat Afghanistan in their clash on Sunday. This scenario will ensure Oman advancing to the AFC U20 Asian Cup Uzbekistan 2023 finals which will be held in March 2023.
Oman head coach David Gordo commented on the team’s defeat against Afghanistan. “The team had several mistakes in the match and the players did not perform well, especially in the attacking side. The opponents Afghanistan wasted the time of the match. We could not expect that they would face an organised team in their defending side. The team lacks speed in the front. However, these are not excuses but we have to work to address these disadvantages in the forthcoming game,” he added.
The Spanish coach added that he could not predict the defeat. “This is football and we have to accept the final result. Our boys could not penetrate the centre of the team and they were lacking for taking the right decision at the right time at the centre. I did not request from players to depend on the long balls but this happened in the match. There is no differences in the main squad and the substitutions list of the team,” he added.