March 28 – Next year’s AFC Asian Cup line-up has finally been confirmed after qualifying for Asia’s premier event drew to a close on Tuesday.
Three more sides confirmed their places at UAE 2019 at the end of the final round of fixtures, with the Philippines, North Korea and Yemen joining the 21 other – already confirmed – teams who will compete at the competition in January.
In a nail-biting encounter in Manila, Phil Younghusband converted a late penalty to seal a 2-1 win for the Philippines over Tajikistan, a win that helped the Azkals claim first place in Group F and, with it, a debut AFC Asian Cup finals appearance.
That win for the Philippines also ensured Yemen’s qualification, with the Yemenis, who were to finish second in Group F, going on to beat Nepal 2-1 and further underline what will be the country’s first Asian Cup appearance since reunification.
Elsewhere, goals from Jong Il-gwan and Pak Kwang-ryong helped North Korea beat Hong Kong 2-1 in Pyongyang.
The victory saw the Koreans secure second place in Group B behind table-topping Lebanon and confirm their participation at the Asian Cup for a fifth time.
AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 Results (March 27)
Mynamar 1-0 Macau
Kyrgyz Republic 2-1 India – both sides qualify
North Korea 2-0 Hong Kong – North Korea qualify
Lebanon 2-1 Malaysia – Lebanon qualify
Afghanistan 2-1 Cambodia
Jordan 1-1 Vietnam – both sides qualify
Oman 1-0 Palestine – both sides qualify
Maldives 7-0 Bhutan
Bahrain 4-0 Turkmenistan – both sides qualify
Chinese Taipei 1-0 Singapore
Yemen 2-1 Nepal – Yemen qualify
Philippines 2-1 Tajikistan – Philippines qualify
The United Arab Emirates (as hosts), Saudi Arabia, Australia, Qatar, Iran, Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Uzbekistan, Iraq, Syria and China had already qualified.
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