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Malaysia under-23 ended their AFC under-23 Championship qualifiers campaign with an exemplary show of courage and hard work in the narrow 1-0 defeat to a strong Japanese side.

The Young Tigers, led by skipper Nazirul Naim in defence and a determined Farhan Abu Bakar in goal, thwarted the Samurai Blue’s continuous efforts in the first half up until the 42nd minute.

Yuya Kubo rose highest and meet Kazuki Anzai’s left wing cross to break the deadlock and put the visitors ahead right before the interval. 

Malaysia responded positively to going down in the second half with Nazirul Naim bursting down the left flank to force a save out of Niekawa Ayumi. Japan continued to pile on the pressure on the home side but was again denied by the heroics of Farhan Abu Bakar.

Our youthful squad finished their qualifying campaign in third place of Group I with second placed Vietnam defeating Macau 7-0 earlier in the day.

Position

Team

Pld

W

D

L

GF

GA

GD

Pts

1

Japan

3

3

0

0

10

0

+10

9

2

Vietnam

3

2

0

1

9

3

+6

6

3

Malaysia

3

1

0

2

3

3

0

3

4

Macau

3

0

0

3

0

16

-16

0

 

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AdmirorGallery 4.5.0, author/s Vasiljevski & Kekeljevic.