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2020 AFC U23 championship - Group D preview: Battles between the runner-up vs West Asian teams

2020 AFC U23 championship - Group D preview: Battles between the runner-up vs West Asian teams

The current AFC U23 runner-up Vietnam needs to be careful about tough rivals DPR Korea U23, Jordan U23, UAE U23 in group D.

At the 2020 AFC U23 Championship, Vietnam U23 is in the No. 1 seed group as the runner-up of the previous tournament. In Group D, DPR Korea U23 is No. 2 seed, seed number 3 and number 4 are Jordan U23 and UAE U23 respectively.

As the current runner-up of the tournament, Vietnam U23 is considered the best team of this group. Coach Park Hang Seo still has many key players who attended the final in Changzhou 2 years ago like Nguyen Quang Hai, Ha Duc Chinh, Bui Tien Dung, Tran Dinh Trong.

The 'gold generation' of Vietnam has recently built other great achievements such as reaching the Asian Cup 2019 quarter-finals, the SEA Games 2019 gold medal, or temporarily the top position of FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifier (group G - Asian).

2020 AFC U23 championship - Group D preview: Battles between the runner-up vs West Asian teams

Coach Park Hang Seo once commented on this group: “UAE U23 is a strong opponent because they have 4-5 players of the national team. Jordan U23 plays physically so they are very strong. And DPR Korea is an unknown team, we do not have much information'.

Indeed, it can be said that DPR Korea U23 is the most underrated representative in the second seed group. However, this is a mysterious opponent.

In general, DPR Korea has various quality players like Kim Nam-il, Song Kum-song, Han Yong-thae, An Song-il...

This team was the first team to qualify for the 2020 AFC U23 championship but it was mainly thanks to their easy group, with Singapore, Mongolia and Hong Kong. However,  DPR Korea U23 only won 2, drew 1 in that group.

2020 AFC U23 championship - Group D preview: Battles between the runner-up vs West Asian teams

On the other hand, Jordan U23 was a team that rivals had to be wary of.

They have some experienced players from the 2018 AFC U23 championship, especially the defenders.

2020 AFC U23 championship - Group D preview: Battles between the runner-up vs West Asian teams

Above, there are potential Jordan players like Mohammad Bani Attiah, who used to wear the Jordan U19 shirt a lot of times. Furthermore, Jordan U23 have 4-5 national players in the squad in order to increase the team's strength.

Besides, UAE U23 is a highly appreciated team. The main achievement of the UAE U23 team is the bronze medal at the  ASIAD 2018, after defeating Vietnam U23 on the thrilling 11m series in the third-place match.

2020 AFC U23 championship - Group D preview: Battles between the runner-up vs West Asian teams

There are many impressive players In the UAE team, notably Zaid Al-Ameri - the player born in 1997 has 3 goals in the qualifying round. In addition, defender Majed Suroor is playing in the Sharjah club, the defending champion of the UAE and is valued at up to £405,000.

Overall in Group D, DPR Korea U23 is a mystery, Vietnam U23 is a real candidate while the UAE is rated best among the No. 4 seed teams, and Jordan will be an opponent with good physical strength and certainty in the defense.