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How to watch AFC Women's Olympic Qualifiers finals

How and when to watch the AFC Women’s Olympic qualifying tournament’s final round

February 15, 2020 By Juan Aguerrevere
In this AFC Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament’s final round preview, we talk about the finalists, how they got here and how and when you can watch the games.

The third round of the 2020 AFC Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament came to a close after a stunning Emily van Egmond stoppage-time equalizer that secured the first seed of Group B for Australia. Now, the Matildas are set to face Vietnam, while China will have to face the tougher opposition, South Korea. The two-legged home and away play-offs are scheduled for March. 

South Korea vs China

South Korea will host the first match of the two-legged play-off is scheduled to be played on March 6 at the Yongin Citizen Sports Park, but the time is to be decided.

The second leg of this playoff has a date but no time or venue. Determining where this match will be played will obviously be tricky given the current state of China regarding the coronavirus.

Australia vs Vietnam 

Australia gets to play the first leg of this playoff in home turf as they host Vietnam at the McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle on March 6 at 8 p.m. UTC+11.

The second match does not have a time yet, but it does have a date and stadium. The defining game will be played at Cam Pha Stadium on March 11. 

About the finalists

Australia

The Westfield Matildas finished top of Group B in the most dramatic way possible. After thrashing Chinese Taipei and Thailand, Australia just needed to draw China to play Vietnam in the semi-final. But the Steel Roses two minutes away from spoiling the party.

At exactly 92 minutes, van Egmond instep made contact with the ball at the top of the 18 and in a split second, the ball was in the back of the net. The 26-year-old midfielder has played a fantastic tournament so far scoring four goals in three matches. The Newcastle Native will have the honor to represent Australia in her hometown against Vietnam on March 6.

China

If you read the text above, then you probably have an idea of how the Chinese are feeling. Bitter is the best way to describe what has happened to them. But with bitterness comes a reaction and China will look to turn the bitterness into sweetness when they take the field against South Korea.

The good news for China is that they have been the better of the two sides in recent history. The Steel Roses have defeated the Taegeuk Ladies twice in their last three meetings with the third game ending in a draw since 2017. And all three games were hosted in South Korea.

South Korea

South Korea will need to break five-game losing streak against China if they want to participate in Tokyo 2020. The Tageuk Ladies have not won a match against their rivals since August 2015.

A positive about playing China is that they don’t have to face Australia, but I wouldn’t feel comfortable as a Koran fan given how the Steel Roses performed against the Matildas. Korea must win the first leg at home given that the second leg is filled with uncertainty. Depending on the second leg seems like it’s out of reach for the South Koreans

Vietnam

Vietnam enters the finals of the tournament having played three more matches than Australia. 

Ranked 32 in the world, Southeastern Asian nation joined the competition’s second round where they defeated Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand. Perhaps the most fortunate side out of the final four, Vietnam did not have to face No. 11 Korea DPR, which withdrew from the tournament leaving three teams in Group A. As a result, the Vietnamese just had to defeat Myanmar to reach the finals and they effectively did so by dominating the match but winning by minimal difference.

As expected, South Korea finished top of the group. Vietnamese fans probably suffered when that van Egmond goal was scored, especially after the 90th minute, meaning that they would have to face Australia in the play-off match. The Vietnamese players should feel proud of what they have accomplished and will carry that pride into McDonald Jones Stadium on March 6.


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