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Qatar’s U23 footballers bow out of Asian Games after defeat to hosts China

In front of a crowd of over 38,000 supporters, China broke the deadlock just three minutes into the match. 

Qatar’s U23 national football team has exited the Asian Games in Hangzhou after losing 1-0 to China on Wednesday.

China’s Tao Qianglong scored an early goal to drive China past Qatar in the men’s football round of 16 at the tournament in Hangzhou.

Reaching the Asian men’s football quarterfinals for the first time since the 2006 Doha Asian Games, China broke the standstill in the third minute when Tao headed a perfect right cross from teammate Fang Hao.

It was a dominating game for China as the team had more than half of the possession and nine shots, while Qatar had only had one attempt though zero on target.

The Chinese side went close to doubling their lead in the 57th minute, but Fang bypassed an open goal opportunity.

Despite the lack of offence, Qatar held a solidly defensive as China’s Gao Tianyi’s goal attempt came close to hitting the net but was swiftly cleared from the goal line.

In the quarterfinals, China will face South Korea, which qualified for the match after slamming Kyrgyzstan 5-1.

The Al-Annabi team hardly scraped through to the knockout stage, scoring only one goal and conceding three.

The Qatari U23 team aimed to redeem themselves after losing in the opening match against Japan 3-1, but found themselves short as they drew against Palestine in their second match-up.

On the other side of the Asian Games pitch, North Korea and Iran edged Bahrain and Thailand respectively.

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