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Asian Cup set for a tasteful Quarter-finals

Eight teams, including five former champions, have advanced to the AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023™ quarter-finals after the Round of 16 concluded on Wednesday.

Three-time Asian Cup winners, the Islamic Republic of Iran secured their spot by defeating Syria 5-3 on penalties in a match that ended 1-1 after 120 minutes at the Abdullah Bin Khalifa Stadium, to become the last team to qualify for the quarter-finals of the Asian Cup.

Earlier on Wednesday, Japan, a four-time champion, secured their place with a 3-1 victory over Bahrain. The quarter-finals, commencing on Friday, will feature a surprising Tajikistan against Jordan at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al Rayyan.

Asian Cup debutants Tajikistan advanced to the quarter-finals by defeating the United Arab Emirates 5-3 on penalties after a 1-1 tie, while Jordan secured their spot with a 3-2 win over Iraq. The winner on Friday will make history as first-time AFC Asian Cup semi-finalists.

The second quarter-final on Friday promises to be a blockbuster as Australia and Korea Republic, both former champions, clash at the Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah.

Asian Cup quarter-finals: Five former champions vie for the crown

Australia secured a comfortable 4-0 victory over Indonesia in their Round of 16 tie on Sunday, while Korea Republic emerged victorious over Saudi Arabia in a penalty shootout on Tuesday. Adding intrigue to the showdown is the fact that it is a rematch of the 2015 final, which Australia won in extra time.

Saturday’s action will commence with Iran taking on Japan, as Team Melli had to overcome a resilient Syrian side in the knockout stage, ultimately securing a quarter-final berth after a 1-1 draw was settled with a shootout where goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand thwarted Fahd Youssef.

Japan, aiming for a record-extending fifth title, rebounded impressively from a group stage loss to Iraq, securing their place in the quarter-finals for the eighth time under Hajime Moriyasu.

The fourth quarter-final will feature Uzbekistan challenging defending champions Qatar at the Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor. Uzbekistan earned a 2-1 victory against Thailand in the Round of 16, while Qatar also won by the same score against Palestine.

Qatar’s win marked their 11th consecutive victory in the AFC Asian Cup, and Akram Afif and his teammates are determined to continue their successful run as the tournament approaches its conclusion.

Quarter-finals
Friday
Tajikistan v Jordan
Venue: Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium (Al Rayyan)
Kick-off: 14:30 (UTC+3)

Australia v Korea Republic
Venue: Al Janoub Stadium (Al Wakrah)
Kick-off: 18:30 (UTC+3)

Saturday
IR Iran v Japan
Venue: Education City Stadium (Al Rayyan)
Kick-off: 14:30 (UTC+3)

Qatar v Uzbekistan
Venue: Al Bayt Stadium (Al Khor)
Kick-off: 18:30 (UTC+3) 

Ethan Dempsey
Ethan Dempsey
Ethan is a lifelong football fan. When he is not obsessing over the Premier League games, Ethan likes to read fantasy tomes, watch football documentaries and waste hours upon hours on video games.
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