THE Philippines absorbed a 3-0 loss to reigning champion Korea at the start of the qualification of the 2022 AFC Under-23 Asian Cup at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.
Azkals vs Korea in Asian Cup qualifiers
The Young Azkals held their own in the first half, but gave up three goals in the second half against a Korean side that eventually showed their might in their Group H match.
Lee Kyuhyuk opened scoring for the Korea U-23 in the 52nd minute off a cross by Go Jaehyeon, who then made it 2-0 on a cross by Lee to return the favor.
A header by Park Jeongin made it a three-goal advantage for Korea.
The Young Azkals’ best chance to score was in the 81st, but Jens Rasmussen was unable to gather the ball inside the penalty box, and into the hands of Korea goalkeeper Lee Gwang-Yeon.
The Philippine U-23 squad coached by Scott Cooper will next face host Singapore on Thursday, 8 p.m.
The top teams in the 11 groups plus the five best second-place nations will move to the tournament proper next year to be held in Uzbekistan from June 1 to 19.
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