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Cambodian U16s lose all five qualifiers

THE Cambodian national team completed their woeful winless campaign in the AFC U16 Championship 2010 qualifiers, with a 5-0 loss to Group G winners North Korea Monday.

Just two minutes in, North Korean forward Kim Song Ho opened the scoring. Jo Kwang then compounded problems for the Cambodian youngsters with a brace either side of the interval. Despite Cambodia throwing on three defenders in the second half, a further double from North Korea’s Ri Ji Song sealed the rout, condemning Cambodia’s fate of bottom place in the group with a goal difference of negative 32 from five games.

With the win, North Korea took first place in Group G with 13 points. There was heartbreak for hosts Thailand, as they threw away a 2-1 lead against South Korea to end the game 2-2 thanks to a late equaliser by Kwon Chang-hoon. The draw allowed Vietnam – also on 8 points after a 0-0 draw with Myanmar on Monday – to claim the remaining automatic qualification place due to their 1-0 head-to-head victory against Thailand. The Thais will wait for other nations to play out their group fixtures to see if their record is good enough to qualify as top third-place finishers.

Iran are current reigning AFC U16 champions, having beaten South Korea 2-1 in the finals in Uzbekistan last year.

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