Header Ads Widget

Azkals exit Asian Cup after Lux hat-trick powers Kyrgyzstan to maiden win

Stephan Schröck made history for the Azkals but it could not prevent them from going out of their maiden Asian Cup. AFC
By Kevin Estrada

MAKATI--The Philippines exit at their debut Asian Cup at the first hurdle after Kyrgyzstan got a comprehensive 3-1 win to end Group C play Wednesday evening at Dubai's Rashid Stadium.

It took a hat-trick by Ulm's Vitalij Lux to give the White Falcons the revenge that they desperately waited for two years to nab the coveted third spot and a chance for the Cental Asian debutants to progress to the knockout stage alongside South Korea, who defeated China 2-0 in the other tie to win Group C.

Yet it was also the Azkals' time to make some history of their own when Stephan Schröck scored a consolation 10 minutes before full time on what could have been Sven-Göran Eriksson's final match of his illustrious managerial career.

Despite getting more of the passes and the possession, the Azkals could not get their shots right and were punished by the Central Asians who went on higher gear on their physicality in which Turki Al-Khodair issued seven bookings out of the total of 36 fouls in the match on both sides.

Lux made no mistake from just outside of the six-yard box in the 24th minute when he hit it on his first touch with his right boot to leave Michael Falkesgaard rooted to his spot after being picked out by Akhlidin Israilov.

At the restart, Lux doubled their lead six minutes into the second half with his right boot that curled past the Bangkok United netminder that was assisted by Bekzhan Sagynbaev.

In the 77th minute, Lux signed, sealed and delivered the three points back to Bishkek with his rebound after an earlier shot hit the post.

Not wanted to be shut out, Schröck fired from distance for the country's maiden Asian Cup goal in the 81st minute, yet they could have gotten level when Patrick Reichelt hit the side netting twice in the match.

Kyrgyzstan: Kadyrbekov (GK), Kichin  (C), Kozubaev, Iusupov, Bernhardt, Murzaev (Rustamov 85'), Sagynbaev, Zhrylgalbek, Lux, Musabekov (Zemlianukin 80'), Israilov (Sydkov)

Philippines: Falkesgaard (GK), Alvaro Silva, Woodland, Manny Ott (Phil YH 59'), Sato, Palla (Dizon 75'), Reed (James YH 60') Ingreso, Schröck (C), Reichelt, Patiño

Follow him on Twitter: @KevinLEstrada