AFC U-16 qualifiers review: Singapore and Cambodia eliminated

On the second day of the 2016 AFC U-16 Championship Group H qualifiers, Thailand edged past Cambodia 1-0 while defending champions North Korea beat hosts Singapore 3-0.

Locked on six points apiece, North Korea and Thailand will face off in a winner-takes-all clash in the final round of matches on Sunday.

North Korea just needs a draw to progress to the finals, which will be staged in India next September, while Thailand needs nothing less than a win.

Meanwhile Singapore and Cambodia will have pride on the line in their other Group H encounter.

Cambodia 0 Thailand 1

Thai fans cheer on their U-15 team from the stands. Photo: Weijie Sim

Thailand were favourites going into this game, and got off to a good start by scoring in the 13th minute.

Tharadon Sornyoha’s defence-splitting pass from inside his own half picked out Korawich Tasa, who took a touch before slamming the ball past Cambodia keeper Heng Tina from a tight angle.

However the floodgates did not open as expected, with the plucky Cambodians matching them stride for stride for most of the game.  

Iki Yusuke’s side should have grabbed a shock equalizer on the 88th minute when Sieng Chanthea squared a teasing ball across the six-yard box, but Tun Somchhai could only fire onto the left-hand post.

Eventually it was the Thais who escaped unscathed with the valuable three points.

Singapore 0 North Korea 3

Just like Thailand, North Korea started off well and scored after 15 minutes played.

After Kye Tam was brought down on the edge of the box, right back Yun Min stepped up and curled the dead ball beyond a helpless Singapore goalkeeper Kevin Wong.

However with Singapore determined to get a positive result after the 5-0 opening day loss to Thailand, Kim Yong Hun’s boys found themselves unable to add to their advantage until the 70th minute.

Kung Jin Song’s deep cross from the right was dummied by Kwon Nam Hyok into the path of Kye, who unleashed a thunderous first-time volley that flew past Wong in a flash.

Substitute Ri Song Jin then rounded off the scoring for the night on the stroke of full time, as he thumped into an empty net after Paek Kwang Min had rounded Wong on the left byline.

Main Photo: Football Association of Singapore