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China beat Australia 1-0 in Olympic warm-up football game

By Xinhua,

Changchun (China) : The Chinese men’s Olympic football team without head coach Dujkovic extended its winning streak in warm-ups with a 1-0 victory over Australia here.

China’s Sunday line-up featured the senior team’s over-age trio, namely forward Han Peng, midfielder Zheng Zhi and defender Li Weifeng, while Australia fielded no over-age players.

The hosts controlled the match most of the time and made several threatening attacks, but their efforts didn’t count until the 80th minute, when substitute Zhao Xuri netted in a flick from Yuan Weiwei.

Australia created little pressure on China’s defence. The “Socceroos” found few ways to rip through China’s defence and some of the attacks were ruled offside.

“The players have been under great pressure, but their attitude towards the match was good,” said Yin Tiesheng, who replaced the Serbian coach Dujkovic as the “executive manager”.

“The attacking was smooth today and there were a lot of chances. But our players squandered many of them. This is what we should improve in the practice run for the Olympics.”

Despite losing the game, Australian coach Graham Arnold was still satisfied with the team’s performance. “Our team travelled two days to get here and got only one training session. I’m very happy with the team’s commitment,” said the coach.

In the Olympics, China has been drawn with Brazil, New Zealand and Belgium in Group C at the men’s 16-team tournament, while Australia has been grouped with defending champion Argentina, Serbia and Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast).

The friendly was the Chinese U-23 team’s first match after its head coach Dujkovic was moved to back seat.