World Cup Qualifiers: Which national team to join Uzbekistan in next round - Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, or Turkmenistan

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On June 6, the fifth round of the Asian World Cup qualifying tournament concluded, featuring national teams from Central Asia.

Uzbekistan is the only team from the region that has confidently advanced to the third stage of qualifying and automatically qualified for the Asian Cup.

The day before, the Uzbek team defeated their neighbor, Turkmenistan, with a score of 3-1, leaving Turkmenistan with just 1 point.

Uzbekistan is in second place in Group E with 13 points, trailing Iran due to goal difference. In the last round, Iran defeated Hong Kong with a score of 2-4.

The group's fate will be decided in the final round in Tehran, where Uzbekistan and Iran will face each other. The first game in Tashkent ended in a 2-2 draw.

The final round will also determine the fate of the Kyrgyzstan national team, which complicated its situation. On June 6 in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan failed to defeat Malaysia, ending the match in a 1-1 draw, a favorable outcome for Malaysia.

After five games in the second round of qualifying in Group D, the standings are as follows:

  1. Oman — 12 points
  2. Kyrgyzstan — 10 points
  3. Malaysia — 7 points
  4. Chinese Taipei — 0 points

Everything will be decided in the final round on June 11. However, it will be challenging for Kyrgyzstan: they have an away game against Oman, while Malaysia will host the group's bottom team, Chinese Taipei.

Kyrgyzstan still has a chance even if they lose to Oman, but it will depend on the game in Malaysia. Malaysia will need to score many goals and not concede.

The national teams of Tajikistan and Turkmenistan have already lost all chances of advancing from their groups. Tajikistan suffered a crushing 0-3 defeat against Jordan and is in third place with five points.

The top two spots are held by Saudi Arabia (13 points) and Jordan (10 points). In the final round, Iran will host Pakistan at home. Turkmenistan, with one point, has no claims.

The top two teams from each group advance to the third round of World Cup qualifying and automatically receive a spot in the 2027 Asian Cup.

It should be noted that the Kazakhstan national team is competing on the European continent and has yet to fight for a spot in the 2026 World Cup. In three months, the team will begin its journey in the Nations League, in Division B. Matches against Austria, Norway, and Slovenia will be challenging, but this is a very important period for the team.

June 7, 2024