A 1-1 draw against the host, Tajikistan, at the Republican Central Stadium in Dushanbe was enough for Iran to become the Central Asian youth champion. With three wins, Iran was the group leader before the final matchday while Tajiks were two points behind, meaning they needed a win to take home the trophy.
Tajikistan took the lead through striker Rustam Soirov to raise the hopes for the host but it was Mahdi Hashemnezhad’s late score in the 80th minute which gave Iran the needed one point for the title.
In the other match of the day, Uzbekistan defeated Turkmenistan 2-0 to finish third in the tournament.
Amir Hossein Nikpour of Iran was named the most valuable player of the event while Tajikistan’s Shahrom Samiev emerged as the top scorer. Iran also took home the fair play award.
The second edition of the Central Asian Football Association’s (CAFA) youth championship saw five nations facing each other in a round-robin format during the tournament that ran from August 9 to August 15. Hosts Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Islamic Republic of Iran, Afghanistan and Uzbekistan participated in this year’s competition.
- source : Mehrnews