HCM CITY (VNS) — Iran strengthened their title credentials by beating Viet Nam 15-4 in Asian Futsal Championships quarter-final match at the Phu Tho Gymnasium yesterday.
The visitors put on a show of fast and furious attacking game that was more engrossing than the scoreline suggests.
Hossein Tayebi and Asghar Hassanzadeh scored a hattrick each; Mohammad Shajari and Alireza Vafaei and Farhad Fakhim each grabbed a brace; and Vahid Shafiei, Mohammad Taheri and Behroz Jafari each scored one goal for the 10-time champions.
For Viet Nam, Ly Khanh Hung found the opponent's net in the 12th and 23rd minutes, followed by Phung Trong Luan one in the 28th. Ton That Phi scored team's fourth goal.
"It was a beautiful game to watch. It's a straight game but Iran have more talent because they have played in World Cup tournaments," Iran's coach Jesus Candelas said in the post-match press conference.
Viet Nam's trainer Bruno Formoso admitted that Iran were too strong and deserved the victory.
"The final score says it all. I don't want to make excuses. Iran played a very good game and Viet Nam also gave it everything," Formoso said.
"The difference between two teams in the first half is that we made mistakes while Iran did not at an important time when the score was 3-1 and the game was intense," the Spaniard said.
Iran will face Uzbekistan in the semi-final match today. The Uzbeks beat Lebanon 6-2 in the last quarter-final match of the day.
Earlier, Kuwait beat Australia 5-2 to cruise to the next round.
After a goalless first with both teams missing their scoring opportunities, the second one came alive with a rush. Kuwait accounted for five of the seven goals.
Hamad Hayat opened the scoring just seconds into the second half and nine minutes later, Abdulrahman Altawail doubled the lead. Abdulrahman Alwadi made it 3-0 before Hamad scored his second in the 32th minute to help Kuwait establish a commanding lead at 4-0.
Tobias Seeto pulled one back for Australia in the 33th minute but Alwadi restored the four-goal gap with a goal one minute later. Jarrod Basger reduced the gap to three goals with two minutes remaining but the Australians were done.
"Kuwait did not play the way they should in the first half but we turned the match around well in the second half, playing a fast counter-attacking game and executing set pieces well. I would like to congratulate my players for their second-half performance," Kuwait's coach Luis Fonseca said.
Kuwait will next play Japan today and Fonseca is wary of the defending champions.
"The game against Japan will be a tough one for us. We will try to minimize our mistakes and play our game and hope we get results to go through the final. It is a big challenge," Fonesca said. — VNS