LIVE Stream: WAFF U18 Championship 2019 – Iraq vs UAE

Iraq UAE WAFF u18

Iraq will face the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on the second matchday in Group B of the first WAFF U18 Boys’ Championship 2019 at the Faisal Al Husseini International Stadium in Al Ram, Palestine on Saturday.

The Emiratis had played out a goalless draw against Bahrain on the opening day of the West Asian tournament on Thursday while Iraq will be hoping to begin their campaign on a good note.

The inaugural edition of the West Asian Football Federation’s (WAFF) U-18 competition will see six nations — hosts Palestine, UAE, Bahrain, Iraq, Qatar and Jordan — battle each other for the title.

The tournament will be held from August 22 to 30 in Palestine with the group stages taking place from August 22 to 26 and the semifinals and final to follow on August 28 and 30 respectively.

Group A features hosts Palestine alongside Qatar and Jordan while Group B consists of Bahrain, Iraq and UAE. Teams in each group will face each other once before the top two teams progress to the semifinals.

The tournament will act as prelude to the 2020 AFC U19 Championship Qualifiers which will begin in November this year and where all of the six nations will compete for a place in the continental championship to be held in October next year.

Recently, IR Iran had won the CAFA U19 Championship 2019 in Central Asia while Australia lifted the AFF U18 Championship 2019 in the ASEAN region. Now, who will emerge as the champions of West Asia? Let us find out.

Iraq vs United Arab Emirates in the 1st WAFF U18 Boys’ Championship 2019 will kick off at 12:00 AM HKT. You can watch the match LIVE right here.

LIVE Stream: WAFF U18 Championship 2019 – Qatar vs Jordan

Qatar Jordan WAFF U18

Qatar will face Jordan on the second matchday in Group A of the first WAFF U18 Boys’ Championship 2019 at the Faisal Al Husseini International Stadium in Al Ram, Palestine on Saturday.

Qatar are playing their first match of the tournament while Jordan were in action on the opening day on Thursday and defeated hosts Palestine 2-0.

The inaugural edition of the West Asian Football Federation’s (WAFF) U-18 competition will see six nations — hosts Palestine, UAE, Bahrain, Iraq, Qatar and Jordan — battle each other for the title.

The tournament will be held from August 22 to 30 in Palestine with the group stages taking place from August 22 to 26 and the semifinals and final to follow on August 28 and 30 respectively.

Group A features hosts Palestine alongside Qatar and Jordan while Group B consists of Bahrain, Iraq and UAE. Teams in each group will face each other once before the top two teams progress to the semifinals.

The tournament will act as prelude to the 2020 AFC U19 Championship Qualifiers which will begin in November this year and where all of the six nations will compete for a place in the continental championship to be held in October next year.

Recently, IR Iran had won the CAFA U19 Championship 2019 in Central Asia while Australia lifted the AFF U18 Championship 2019 in the ASEAN region. Now, who will emerge as the champions of West Asia? Let us find out.

Qatar vs Jordan in the 1st WAFF U18 Boys’ Championship 2019 will kick off at 9:00 PM HKT. You can watch the match LIVE right here.

AFF Women’s Championship: 7-0 defeat to Thailand kills Malaysia hopes; Philippines through to semifinal

Thailand Philippines Malaysia AFF women

Philippines have joined hosts and Group A winners Thailand in the semifinals of the AFF Women’s Championship after the final matchday of the group stages. 

Three teams were in contention for the two semifinal spots available for Group A with hosts Thailand leading the group with nine points and Philippines and Malaysia both sitting on six points.

However, the Malaysian women had a tough ask in front of them as they had to defeat 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup participants and defending champions Thailand and also hope Philippines lose to Singapore in their final group match.

It was not to be as Philippines went on to win their match against Singapore 4-0 helped on by a hattrick from Alisha Del Campo and another from the boots of US-born attacker Quinley Quezada.

Knowing their fate even before kicking off in their final match of the tournament, Malaysia suffered further disappointment as they lost 7-0 to defending champions Thailand at the Institute of Physical Education Chonburi Campus Stadium.

Saowalak Pengngam scored five goals for the Thai women’s national team while Khwanrudi Saengchan scored a brace. Orapin Waenngoen found the other goal for Thailand.

Thailand will now face Group B runners-up Myanmar in the semifinals of the AFF Women’s Championship while Group B winners Vietnam will take on Group A runners-up Philippines in the second semi.

The last-four clashes are scheduled to be played on August 25 followed by the final on August 27.

(Photos courtesy: FA Thailand)

Vissel Kobe thrash Sagan Tosu 6-1 in Fernando Torres’ farewell match

‘I want to enjoy my last match’ – Torres

It wasn’t an ideal farewell for former Spain striker Fernando Torres as his J1 League club Sagan Tosu suffered a 6-1 defeat at the hands of Vissel Kobe on Friday.

Torres had announced back in June that he would close out his career when Sagan Tosu face Vissel Kobe in the Japanese top division in a match that could feature his compatriots Andres Iniesta and David Villa.

However, the outcome of the game will not be something Torres will look back upon fondly.

Hotaru Yamaguchi gave visitors Vissel Kobe the lead at the Ekimae Real Estate Stadium as early as the 11th minute before Torres’ former international teammate  Iniesta, who had penned an emotional letter for the former Atletico Madrid striker, converted a penalty to make it 2-0 in the 20th minute.

Junya Tanaka made it 3-0 two minutes later, but Iniesta’s involvement was cut short just before the half time when he was taken off for Takuya Yasui.

Kyogo Furuhashi made it 4-0 nine minutes after the restart before adding another in the 73rd minute.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

One last battle … @sagantosu_official @visselkobe

A post shared by 𝙵𝙴𝚁𝙽𝙰𝙽𝙳𝙾 𝚃𝙾𝚁𝚁𝙴𝚂 (@fernandotorres) on

Sagan Tosu finally found a goal for themselves in the 79th minute when Thomas Vermaelen headed the ball into his own net. However, Yamaguchi, who had opened the scoring, also sealed it with Vissel’s sixth in the 86th minute.

Torres, who joined Sagan Tosu in July 2018, had helped the club stay up in the Japanese domestic league last season scoring thrice in 17 matches.

The former Liverpool, Chelsea and Atletico striker retires from the sport with Sagan Tosu sitting 16th in the 18-team league with 10 rounds of fixtures still left to play.

V.League suspends four referees for big mistakes in attempt to gain credibility

V.League Vietnam

V.League organisers have suspended four referees for the rest of the year after they were found to have made huge errors during Vietnamese top division matches this month.

The Vietnam Professional Football (VPF) have suspended referees Tran Dinh Thinh and Ngo Quoc Hung as well as assistant referees Nguyen Trung Nam and Le Duc Vu for mistakes that directly affected results of games in rounds 20 and 21 of V.League.

The decision comes on the back of frequent mistakes from Vietnamese referees during the domestic matches that has raised plenty of complaints from the clubs and supporters and has led to plans of hiring foreign referees to officiate matches in Vietnam.

V.League had said they will start using the Video Assistant Referee from June this year, but it is yet to be introduced in the domestic league and it is learnt that there is a long way to go before the technology can be introduced.

Of the four suspended referees, assistant referee Nam created controversy after not flagging Becamex Binh Duong’s Ho Sy Giap for offside in match against HAGL FC on August 16. The Binh Duong player was almost three metres behind the HAGL defence, however, the offside call never came and Giap scored.

Meanwhile, referee Ngo Quoc Hung and assistant Le Duc Vu are suspended after they failed to spot Hanoi FC goalkeeper Nguyen Van Cong stepping out of the goalline to stop a penalty kick from SHB Da Nang’s Gaston Merlo. And the goal stood and Da Nang went on to lose the game 2-1.

Da Nang were the victims on August 10 as well, that time against Sanna Khanh Hoa, when referee Tran Dinh Thinh denied them a penalty and instead yellow carded Ha Duc Chinh for acting. However, replays showed Duc Chinh was indeed fouled and Da Nang should have been awarded a penalty.

Park Hang-seo to face his mentor Guus Hiddink as Vietnam U-22s set up China PR friendly

Vietnam Park Hiddink China

Vietnam head coach Park Hang-seo will face his mentor Guus Hiddink after Vietnam have reportedly set up a friendly match against China PR U-23s next month.

The two coaches have worked together during the last decade when Hiddink was in charge of the Korea Republic national team during 2001 and 2002 including at the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

Dutch tactician Hiddink was the current Vietnam head coach’s mentor during the period as Park was also coaching the South Korean U-23 side and working closely with the national team set up.

Korea Republic would go on to make a historic semifinal appearance in the World Cup they co-hosted with Japan, but shortly after, Hiddink would return to his home nation to take up the job at PSV Eindhoven.

Almost 17 years on, the duo are set for a reunion as Park’s Vietnam are set to face Hiddink’s China U-23 at the Promotion Fund for Vietnamese Football Talent (PVF) Football Training Centre in Hung Yen on September 8.

Park, who is in charge of both the senior and U-23 Vietnam sides, will have to guide Vietnam in their 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup Joint-Qualifiers opener against Thailand on September 5 before joining up with the U-22s for the China friendly.

The South Korean’s assistant Kim Yan-yoon will coach the U-22s in Park’s absence.

The Vietnam U-22s are preparing for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games in Philippines later this year as well as the 2020 AFC U23 Championship in Thailand next year.

LIVE: Malaysia Cup 2019 – JDT vs PKNP FC

JDT malaysia cup 2019

Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) FC will face PKNP FC in their fourth group match of the Malaysia Cup 2019 at the Tan Sri Dato’ Haji Hassan Yunos Stadium in Larkin on Friday.

JDT have recorded two wins and a draw after playing the first set of fixtures in Group B of the Malaysia Cup and are sitting top of their group at the halfway point. They began their campaign with a 3-1 win over UiTM FC and then defeated fellow Malaysia Super League outfit PJ City FC 4-2 with both the matches played at home.

However, they suffered a minor setback in their first away game of the cup when they were held to a 2-2 draw by PKNP, their today’s opponents. Gonzalo Cabrera gave JDT an early 2-0 lead scoring in the ninth and 14th minutes, but PKNP came back to rescue a point with goals coming from Yashir Islame in the 35th minute and Giancarlo in the 79th.

JDT have seven points from three matches while second-placed PJ City have six points from three. PKNP are third with four points while UiTM are yet to open their account. Only the top two teams from the group will progress to the quarterfinals of the competition.

JDT vs PKNP FC in the Malaysia Cup 2019 will kick off at 9 PM HKT. You can follow all the updates from the match LIVE on our Matchday Blog right here!

Indian Super League 2019-20 fixtures released; Kerala Blasters to face ATK in ISL opener

ISL

Kerala Blasters will face ATK  to kick off the Indian Super League (ISL) once again after the fixtures for the 2019-20 season of the Indian domestic league was released on Friday.

The ISL is into its sixth edition this year and will kick off on October 20 — five days after India’s 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup Joint-Qualifiers home tie against Bangladesh.

Bengaluru FC are the defending champions of the ISL having won the trophy defeating FC Goa 1-0 in the final held back in March. This time around, the winners of the league phase of the ISL could stand a chance to book a place in the 2021 AFC Champions League qualifiers.

Two-time finalists Blasters, coached by their new Dutch tactician Eelco Schattorie, will face heavy spenders ATK at the Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium in Kochi for the league opener while defending champions Bengaluru will be in action a day later when they host NorthEast United FC.

Blasters had played ATK in last season’s opening match as well. It was visitors from Kerala who recorded a 2-0 win over ATK last time around at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata with goals coming from Matej Poplatnik and Slavisa Stojanovic.

Two-time champions ATK have spend heavily in the transfer market this season bringing in the likes of A-League topscorer Roy Krishna and Melbourne City FC striker Dario Vidosic.

The league phase of the Indian Super League will run till February 23, 2020 before the top four teams qualify for the play-offs.

ATK, Bengaluru FC, Chennaiyin FC, Delhi Dynamos FC, FC Goa, FC Pune City, Jamshedpur FC, Kerala Blasters FC, Mumbai City FC and NorthEast United FC are the 10 teams that will take part in the ISL 2019-20.

Check out the complete fixtures here!

All 16 Thai League 1 clubs to feature in eFootball PES 2020

Thai League PES 2020

All 16 Thai League 1 teams have been confirmed to feature in the latest version of the popular football video game franchise Pro Evolution Soccer — eFootball PES 2020.

PES 2020 developers Konami have confirmed that the Thai League will one of the licensed leagues in the upcoming edition of the game giving Thai football fans the opportunity to play as their favourite club teams in PES.

The 19th instalment of the video game is set to release worldwide on September 10, 2019 and in Asia on September 12, 2019 and will be published for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One platforms.

Buriram United, Chainat Hornbill, Chiangmai FC, Chonburi FC, Nakhon Ratchasima Mazda FC, Port FC, PT Prachuap FC, PTT Rayong, Ratchaburi Mitr Phol, Samut Prakan City, SCG Muangthong United, Singha Chiangrai United, Sukhothai FC, Suphanburi FC, Trat FC and True Bangkok United are the 16 sides that will feature under Toyota Thai League in eFootball PES 2020.

This makes the Thai top division the only Southeast Asian league to feature in the game.

Malaysia Super League champions Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) are the only other ASEAN club to feature in the game as the Southern Tigers are included under AFC Champions League where they are one of the 32 teams from Asia.

The Chinese Super League also finds its place in the PES 2020 with all its 16 teams including Guangzhou Evergrande FC, Shanghai SIPG, Shandong Luneng and Jiangsu Suning are included.

LIVE Stream: AFF Women’s Championship 2019 – Thailand vs Malaysia

AFF women Thailand Malaysia

Hosts Thailand take on Malaysia in an all-important Group A tie of the AFF Women’s Championship 2019 at the Institute of Physical Education Chonburi Campus Stadium in Thailand on Friday.

Heading into the final matchday in Group A, hosts Thailand, Philippines and Malaysia are in contention to take the two semifinal slots available for the group. Thailand have nine points from three matches while Philippines and Malaysia have six each.

Malaysia, hence, must defeat Thailand and hope that the result go their way in the other match of the group — Philippines vs Singapore where a defeat for the Filipinos is must for Malaysian women to have a chance of progression.

The 10th edition of the tournament will see competition in two groups with the top two sides from Group A and B progressing to the semifinals.

Group A will feature hosts and 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup participants Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Timor-Leste while Group B will feature Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia.

The semifinals will be held at the Chonburi Campus Stadium on August 25 followed by the third-place play-off and final on August 27.

Thailand are the most successful nation in the tournament and the defending champions having defeated Australia 3-2 in the 2018 final held in Indonesia — their fourth title. Vietnam and Myanmar have also won the ASEAN women’s title two times each.

The group stages are scheduled to run till August 23 while the final will be held on August 27 to crown the new women’s champions of ASEAN. Thailand had defeated Australia U-20s 3-2 in the final to win the 2018 AFF Women’s Championship.

Thailand vs Malaysia in the AFF Women’s Championship 2019 will kick off at 7:00 PM HKT. You can watch the match LIVE right here!

LIVE Stream: AFF Women’s Championship 2019 – Singapore vs Philippines

Philippines AFF Women

Philippines face Singapore in a crucial Group A match of the AFF Women’s Championship 2019 at the Institute of Physical Education Chonburi Campus Stadium in Thailand on Friday.

Heading into the final matchday in Group A, hosts Thailand, Philippines and Malaysia are in contention to take the two semifinal slots available for the group. Thailand have nine points from three matches while Philippines and Malaysia have six each.

While Thailand face Malaysia, Philippines take on Singapore in a match where the Filipinos have to win in order to keep their fates in their own hands and progress to the last four.

The 10th edition of the tournament will see competition in two groups with the top two sides from Group A and B progressing to the semifinals.

Group A will feature hosts and 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup participants Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Timor-Leste while Group B will feature Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia.

The semifinals will be held at the Chonburi Campus Stadium on August 25 followed by the third-place play-off and final on August 27.

Thailand are the most successful nation in the tournament and the defending champions having defeated Australia 3-2 in the 2018 final held in Indonesia — their fourth title. Vietnam and Myanmar have also won the ASEAN women’s title two times each.

The group stages are scheduled to run till August 23 while the final will be held on August 27 to crown the new women’s champions of ASEAN. Thailand had defeated Australia U-20s 3-2 in the final to win the 2018 AFF Women’s Championship.

Singapore vs Philippines in the AFF Women’s Championship 2019 will kick off at 4:00 PM HKT. You can watch the match LIVE right here!

LIVE Stream: SAFF U15 Championship 2019 – Sri Lanka vs Nepal

sAFF U15

Sri Lanka will face Nepal on the second matchday of the SAFF U15 Championship 2019 at the Kalyani Stadium in West Bengal on Friday.

Sri Lanka had defeated Bhutan 3-2 in their opening match on Wednesday while Nepal had suffered a 5-0 defeat to hosts India in their opener.

This is the sixth edition of the U-15 championship conducted by the South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) and will be competed by five national teams from August 21 to 31.

The five teams — hosts India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Bhutan — will play each other in the round robin format in the group stages of the tournament before the top two teams qualify for the final to be played on August 31.

Bangladesh are the defending champions of the tournament having won the trophy by defeating Pakistan on penalties after the score remained 1-1 at the end of regulation time at the ANFA Complex in Lalitpur, Nepal last year. 2018 finalists Pakistan are not taking part in this year’s competition.

The competition began as the SAFF U16 Championship in 2011, but was officially renamed SAFF U15 Championship in 2017. India and Bangladesh are the most successful sides in the tournament having won the title twice each while Pakistan won the inaugural edition.

Sri Lanka vs Nepal in the SAFF U15 Championship 2019 will kick off at 5:30 PM HKT (3:00 PM IST). You can watch the match LIVE right here!

LIVE Stream: SAFF U15 Championship 2019 – Bhutan vs Bangladesh

Bhutan SAFF U15 Bangladesh

Bhutan will face defending champions Bangladesh in the second matchday of the SAFF U15 Championship 2019 at the Kalyani Stadium in West Bengal on Friday.

Bhutan had suffered a 3-2 defeat Sri Lanka on the opening day of the tournament on Wednesday and will want to avoid another defeat to keep their hopes alive in the competition. Meanwhile, the Bangladeshis will be playing their first match of the tournament.

This is the sixth edition of the U-15 championship conducted by the South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) and will be competed by five national teams from August 21 to 31.

The five teams — hosts India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Bhutan — will play each other in the round robin format in the group stages of the tournament before the top two teams qualify for the final to be played on August 31.

Bangladesh are the defending champions of the tournament having won the trophy by defeating Pakistan on penalties after the score remained 1-1 at the end of regulation time at the ANFA Complex in Lalitpur, Nepal last year. 2018 finalists Pakistan are not taking part in this year’s competition.

The competition began as the SAFF U16 Championship in 2011, but was officially renamed SAFF U15 Championship in 2017. India and Bangladesh are the most successful sides in the tournament having won the title twice each while Pakistan won the inaugural edition.

Bhutan vs Bangladesh in the SAFF U15 Championship 2019 will kick off at 2:30 PM HKT (12:00 PM IST). You can watch the match LIVE right here!

Images: Real Madrid starlet Takefusa Kubo arrives in Mallorca to complete transfer

Takefusa Kubo Real madrid

Real Madrid starlet Takefusa Kubo is on the verge of completing a loan move to RCD Mallorca after being pictured at the airpot on his way to signing the new deal.

18-year-old Kubo had only signed for Real this June from J1 League side FC Tokyo, but he was registered with Segunda Division side Real Madrid Castilla, coached by Raul Gonzalez, ahead of the new season after spending the preseason with Zinedine Zidane’s first team.

However, the Japan international has opted to make a move to another La Liga club where he would hope to develop as a player by winning playing time in the Spanish top division over the course of the season.

It is learnt that Real and Real Mallorca has agreed terms for the one-year loan move for the Barcelona youth product and the transfer was imminent. There was further proof of it when Kubo was pictured at the Palma de Mallorca Airport with former Swiss footballer Maheta Molango, who is currently the chief executive officer of the newly-promoted La Liga club.

Mallorca opened their La Liga campaign with a 2-1 win over Eibar last Saturday and will face Real Sociedad in their next league fixture on Sunday.

What a talent! Japan star Takefusa Kubo skills his way past 4 players to score in Real Madrid training

It is being reported that Kubo turned down several other offers, including one from Real Valladolid, to agree for a move to Mallorca.