Southeast Asia

Thailand Strike Back at AFC U16 Championships

After a disappointing start, Thailand has hit back in style at the AFC U16 Championships in Kuala Lumpur.

A 4-2 victory over the hosts has seen the War Elephants pick up their first points of the campaign, setting them on the right track after a 5-2 defeat on opening day at the hands of Japan. Goals from Chonburi’s Waragon Thongbai and Buriram United’s Apidet Janngam followed a brace from Suphanat Mueanta. Thailand’s rising starlet now ranks second in the race for the golden boot behind Malaysia’s Luqman Hakim Shamsudin, who also scored and received a red card in yesterday’s match.

Despite the result, both of the group’s South-East Asian sides have a chance of progressing to the knockout stages, aided in part by Japan’s shock 0-0 draw against Tajikistan. Victories for the neighboring nations in their respective final matches will be enough to see them both progress.

Elsewhere, in Group C, Indonesia and Vietnam are also set for a regional derby at the tournament. The former won their opening game over group favorites Iran, building on their success at the 2018 AFF Championships from earlier this year. Meanwhile, Vietnam’s shock defeat to India in the last round is unlikely to sit well with the fans. They will need a victory if they wish to maintain their hopes of qualifying for the knockout stages.