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AFC Asian Cup

Top 10 best performing youngsters in AFC Asian Cup 2023

Published at :February 15, 2024 at 11:11 PM
Modified at :February 15, 2024 at 11:11 PM
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(Courtesy : AFC Media)

Gourav Samal


At just 19 years of age, Sultan Adil scored two goals in the AFC Asian Cup 2023.

The AFC Asian Cup 2023 recently concluded, with Qatar securing the title for the second time. Despite Jordan’s resilient performance until the final minutes, Akram Afif’s three converted penalties proved pivotal in securing the victory for his team and clinching the championship.

Although there were select performances and experienced individuals receiving individual awards, over the course of a month, numerous young talents garnered attention with their consistent performances for their national team in the tournament.

In this article, we will explore the top 10 remarkable young individuals whose exceptional performances captivated audiences throughout the course of the tournament.

10. Sultan Adil – 19 years 8 months (Saudi Arabia)

The injury of the 19-year-old player posed a significant concern for the Saudi Arabian team, as he was unable to participate in the matches following the initial two. During his appearances, the central forward managed to score two goals. His participation in the subsequent matches could have greatly benefited the Saudi Arabian team, which ultimately concluded their campaign in the round of 16 with a loss to Tajikistan.

9. Ali Jasim – 20 years (Iraq)

Although Iraq’s campaign ended in the round of 16, the young talented left winger’s performance in the matches was pivotal for their run in the tournament. The 20-year-old player provided three assists in four matches, with two of them coming in the match against Vietnam. His proficiency in providing assists from set pieces and dribbling past opponents sets him apart on the field.

8. Abbosbek Fayzullaev – 20 years 4 months (Uzbekistan)

The 20-year-old displayed remarkable flexibility throughout the tournament, as he adeptly played in different positions during each match. To everyone’s surprise, he performed exceptionally well in every role and even managed to score two goals. Notably, his significant contribution includes the second goal in the match against Thailand, which ultimately secured their victory with a one-goal margin.

7. Justin Hubner – 20 years 5 months (Indonesia)

The center back, who made his national team debut just before the commencement of the AFC Asian Cup 2023 in a friendly match against Libya, exhibited an impressive approach in defense. Coach Shin Tae-yong demonstrated confidence in him by including him in the starting lineup from the very first match. This robustly built defender has a promising career ahead of him if he maintains his performance and form.

6. Abdullah Radif – 21 years (Saudi Arabia)

The 21-year-old forward had a single opportunity to start the game from the beginning, occupying his designated position as a center forward. However, he made an immediate impact in the round of 16 match against South Korea when he entered the field and swiftly scored the first goal of the match. Despite his team’s loss, his skills were prominently displayed in this crucial match.

5. Jordan Bos – 21 years 3 months (Australia)

In the first match of the tournament, Australia’s player Bos made a significant impact by scoring a goal against India. He demonstrated remarkable proficiency in take-ons and successful dribbles, and came very close to providing a potentially match-winning assist against South Korea. Despite being designated as a left back, Bos has effectively assumed the role of a left winger in the matches.

4. Jassem Gaber – 21 years 11 months (Qatar)

The center back commenced the tournament as a substitute in the initial match. However, subsequently, he consistently appeared in the starting lineup for every game. His defensive capabilities, including high-intensity tackles and clearances, significantly contributed to his team scoring the first equalizer in the semifinal match against Iran.

3. Takefusa Kubo – 22 years 8months (Japan)

Takefusa Kubo battling it out against Iran. (Courtesy: AFC)

Kubo made a significant contribution to Japan’s advancement into the quarterfinals. Despite the midfielder’s statistical record showing only one goal and one assist, he has demonstrated his value on the field through consistent runs and the delivery of precise crosses to create scoring opportunities.

2. Kang-in Lee – 22 years 11 months (South Korea)

Kang-in Lee, the midfielder, delivered an outstanding performance throughout the tournament. He scored two goals, provided an assist in all six matches, and consistently created numerous scoring opportunities for his team. Notably, his significant impact was evident during the draw match against Malaysia, where his presence on the field and strategic movements played a crucial role in maintaining Korea’s position in the game.

1. Vahdat Hanonov – 23 years 6 months (Tajikistan)

The center back has participated in every minute of Tajikistan’s games in the tournament, solidifying his position as a key prospect for the team’s future. Additionally, he contributed a goal during the match against the UAE, which they won via a penalty shootout in the round of 16. Furthermore, it is noteworthy that he effectively anchored his side to the quarterfinals by serving as a pillar in defense and successfully repelling threats.

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