Football fans in Hanoi flock out to streets celebrating Vietnam's win over Qatar (Photo: VNA)

Tokyo (VNA) – Japanese newspapers praised Vietnam’s U23 after the team made impressive victory against Asian powerhouse Qatar in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U23 Championship held in China on January 23.

The NHK national public broadcasting organisation wrote an article about the match publishing images of football fans across the country flocking out to streets with the national flags in their hands to celebrate the victory.

In the semi final, Vietnam beat Qatar 4-3 in the penalty shootout after finishing the thrilling match 2-2 in official time and no goals in extra time to play the final match against Uzbekistan on January 27.

Other news sources in Japan including the Kyodo News Agency, Nikkan Sports, Sankei Shimbun and Jiji press, along with a number of websites, also ran articles about Vietnam’s win over Qatar.

Japanese media also noted that in the final match of the AFC U23 Championship, Vietnam will face Uzbekistan, which thrashed Japan 4-0 in the quarter final. Uzbekistan also defeated the Republic of Korea 4-1 in the other semi final lasting for 120 minutes.

Vietnam became the first Southeast Asian country to enter the final of the AFC U23 championship.

The team qualified for the semifinals of the championship on January 20 thanks to a dramatic victory over Iraq.

Vietnam lost only to the Republic of Korea in a qualifying match where they scored first, before knocking out powerhouses Australia, Syria and Iraq.-VNA