Tao Qianglong scored an early goal to help China beat Qatar 1-0 in the men's football round of 16 at the Hangzhou Asian Games on
Jiang Shenglong (R)of China competes during the Men's round of 16 match of Football between China and Qatar at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, east China's Zhejiang Province, Sept. 27, 2023. (Xinhua/Jia Haocheng)
In front of over 38,000 supporters, the home team broke the deadlock just three minutes into the match, when Tao received a perfect right cross from Fang Hao and headed home the first shot.
China had a control of the match with nine shots, while the away team only had one. The Chinese side was close to double the lead in the 57th minute, but Fang missed the open goal opportunity.
In the 89th minute, Zhang Wei penetrated into the box in a counterattack and launched a powerful shot onto the post, before Gao Tianyi's follow-up goal attempt being cleared on the goal line.
Chinese defender Jiang Shenglong and Jassem Abdulsallam of Qatar were both sent off with direct red cards due to a physical confrontation in the stoppage time. China's key midfielder Gao will also be suspended for the next round for yellow card accumulation.
In the quarterfinals, China will face the tournament's top favorite South Korea, who thrashed Kyrgyzstan 5-1.
Elsewhere, DPR Korea and Iran edged Bahrain and Thailand respectively with 2-0, while Palestine lost 1-0 to Hong Kong, China.
The women's football matches on Wednesday witnessed DPR Korea's 10-0 triumph over Singapore and Chinese Taipei's 1-0 win against Thailand.