Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Uzbek's decisive 3-0 'bye' to China from Asian Cup

In probably its finest football moment since it declared its independence from the crumbling Soviet Union in 1991, Uzbekistan shocked China 3-0 in their final AFC Asian Cup 2007 Group C match to continue to the quarter-finals and leave the East Asian giant out of the knock-out stages for the first time since 1980. Captain Maksim Shatskikh blasted in a rebound from his own header on 72 minutes before Timur Kapadze capitalised on an error from stand-in goalkeeper Yang Jun and substitute striker Alexander Geynrikh finished from another rebound in injury time. China were runners-up in 2004 when they lost a controversial final to Japan. Uzbekistan were quarter-finalists at the last tournament, when they were ousted on penalties by Bahrain.

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