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5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

There are players who illustrated a top performance, but there are also flops as well. We pick out 5 of the most notable players who didn’t come up to expectations in this tournament.

1. Mehdi MehdikhaniIran U23

5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

The 22-year-old midfielder was predicted to be the midfield maestro of Iran U23, as he is now playing abroad, for the club Varaždin – a top-flight football club in Croatia. In fact, Mehdikhani didn’t miss a single minute in this campaign but failed to register a single attacking return. As a result, Iran U23 closely lost the group stage, finished at the 3rd place and went home early although being considered a dark horse in this tournament.

2. Ryotaro MeshinoJapan U23

5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

As a tournament to prepare for the upcoming Olympics hosted at home, Japan U23 showed a preposterous performance, finished 4th in a considered easy group for them. One of the players who failed to show up was Ryotaro Meshino – the midfielder currently playing in Scotland. Following the footstep of the Japan legend Shunsuke Nakamura by playing in Scotland, Meshino couldn’t raise the team morale and come up with a performance of his ability.

3. Tarek SalmanQatar U23

5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

The Asian Cup champion returns to the U23 team to help finish the dream of winning the AFC U23 Championship. The Qatar international with 31 caps was called up to bring the solid to the back of the team. However his team conceded 3 goals, leading to the elimination at the group stage of the tournament that they were the semi-finalist last time out.

4. Zhang YuningChina U23

5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

The Chinese journeyman with experience at the European level from a very young age could not lift the team mentally in the tournament. As a powerful striker, he can not register any significant attacking return, before leaving the tournament due to injury in the first game against South Korea U23. China U23 finished 4th, showing their problems which are needed to be dealt with.

5. Nguyen Quang HaiVietnam U23

5 dreadful stars in AFC U23 Championship: Zhang Yuning, Ryotaro Meshino & Nguyen Quang Hai flop

The Vietnamese captain returns to this tournament with high expectations after coming up with an exceptional performance 2 years ago with 5 goals. But this time, he could not even register a goal or an assist, left the team vulnerable and said goodbye to the tournament without any win. It could be due to his teammates’ quality, but individually, he could not help the teamplay significantly.