China Beats Thailand to Keep Olympic Qualification Hope Alive

 October 30, 2023
China Beats Thailand to Keep Olympic Qualification Hope Alive
Yan Jinjin (2nd R) of China shoots and scores during the AFC Women's Olympic Qualification Tournament 2024 (Asian Qualifiers Round 2) Group B match against Thailand in Xiamen, southeast China's Fujian Province on Oct. 29, 2023. [Xinhua/Wei Peiquan]


XIAMEN, China, Oct. 29 (Xinhua) — Left back Chen Qiaozhu scored one goal and set up another as China beat Thailand 3-0 in the 2024 Olympic women's football Asian qualifiers here on Sunday.

Following a 2-1 loss to DPR Korea in Thursday's opening match, China's head coach Shui Qingxia made multiple changes, with overseas players Zhang Linyan, Shen Mengyu and Tu Linli as well as goalkeeper Xu Huan brought into the starting lineup against a side that had lost to South Korea 10-1 on Thursday.

China broke the deadlock in the 15th minute, when Yan Jinjin volleyed home in the penalty area after collecting a precise left cross from Chen.

In the 68th minute, Chen launched a long distance strike from left flank, and the ball went over the goalkeeper into the far post. Shen Mengyu penetrated into the box and assisted Wurigumula to add the third with 10 minutes to play.

China Beats Thailand to Keep Olympic Qualification Hope Alive
Wang Yanwen (2nd L) of China vies with Supapron Intaraprasit of Thailand during the match. [Xinhua/Wei Peiquan]


China had a total of 29 shots including 15 on target, but Thai goalkeeper Tiffany Sornpao made several brilliant saves to help her side avoid another huge defeat.

"We really need the win and the result is positive. I changed the lineup since two players had fever and couldn't play. Yao Wei also felt sick. I hope all the players can have a good rest and be well-prepared for the next match," Shui explained.

In the other Group B match on Sunday, DPR Korea and South Korea finished a goalless draw and both teams now have four points to lead the group. China ranks third with one point less, while Thailand sits bottom after suffering two defeats.

According to the rule, three group winners and the best runner-up will advance to the final stage of the Asian qualifiers, which will decide the two qualifying teams for the Paris Olympics.

This means China has to beat South Korea in the final group match next Wednesday to keep their qualification hope alive.

"There are lots of possibilities for the next match. South Korea has some new faces and it's a different team now. We have to do better in details," Shui said. 


(Source: Xinhua)


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