The race for places at Qatar 2022 began in Asia
A Tsedenbal Norjmoo screamer proved the planet’s first qualifying goal
A late show from Cambodia rocked Pakistan
Home advantage was capitalised upon as 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™ qualifying began with five fixtures in Asia. Mongolia, Macau, Cambodia and Bhutan all kept a clean sheet and won their first round, first legs in front of their own fans, while Bangladesh emerged 1-0 victors in Laos. FIFA.com recaps the action.
Results 6 June Mongolia 2-0 Brunei Darussalam Macau 1-0 Sri Lanka Laos 0-1 Bangladesh Cambodia 2-0 Pakistan Bhutan 1-0 Guam
Malaysia-Timor-Leste was postponed until Friday, 7 June.
The match Mongolia 2-0 Brunei Darussalam Goals: Tsedenbal Norjmoo 9, Naranbold Nyam-Osor 70
Mongolia got only their second victory in World Cup qualifying history, leaving them on the cusp of reaching Asia’s second round for the first time. Captain Norjmoo put Michael Weiss’s side ahead early on with a thunderous 25-yard free-kick. Brunei did create chances, but their finishing was wasteful, and Nyam-Osor’s close-range effort left them with it all to do.
The other attractions Bhutan produced the biggest surprise at the same stage of Asian qualifying for Russia 2018, defeating Sri Lanka home and away to reach the second round. Four years on, the Dragon Boys took a step towards doing the same with a 1-0 win over a heavily-fancied Guam. Tshering Dorji, the solitary marksman in their 1-0 win over Sri Lanka at home in 2015, was again the hero, latching on to a cross to score the winner on 35 minutes.
Two quick-fire, late goals saw Keisuke Honda's Cambodia open brightly with a 2-0 reverse of Pakistan. Substitute Sieng Chanthea capitalised on a poor clearance to break the deadlock on 82 minutes, before Kouch Sokumpheak ghosted past a series of Pakistani defenders to seal the victory.
Bangladesh were the only visitors to get a result, and it was a victory, with 19-year-old Robiul Hasan getting the only goal late on.
Did you know? Tshering Dorji may only be 23, but today’s goal was his third in World Cup qualifying. As a teenager, he netted against Sri Lanka in the first round of the Asian preliminaries for Russia 2018, before doing the same against the Maldives in the second round.