Ones to Watch: Odiljon Hamrobekov (Uzbekistan)

In their seventh AFC Asian Cup appearance, Uzbekistan will be looking for Odiljon Hamrobekov to inspire them to new heights.

Ever since its independence, Uzbekistan have made it to every AFC Asian Cup. Having reached the quarter-finals on three occasions and finished fourth in 2011, the country is eager to hit a new milestone and reach their first final in the competition.

Nationality: Uzbekistan

Date of birth: 13/02/1996

Position: Midfielder

Current club: FC Nasaf (Uzbekistan)

Previous clubs: None

International Background

Hamrobekov made his international debut in 2017 in a friendly match against the 2019 AFC Asian Cup hosts, the UAE, and has gone on to make nine appearances for the White Wolves.

The midfielder was crowned most valuable player of the tournament when Uzbekistan won the AFC U23 Championship earlier this year.

With experience in abdundance in the likes of Odil Ahmedov and Server Djeparov, Hamrobekov will add an element of youth into Hector Cuper’s side.

Style of play

With his perfectly timed tackles and ability to read opponents, the 22-year-old offers Cuper a variety of choices as he can play as a centre-back, defensive midfielder or central midfielder.

Masterclass defending is not Hamrobekov’s only quality, the youngster is capable of controlling match tempos with his exquisite range of passing and composure when is deployed in midfield.

What to look for

Ever since independence, Uzbekistan have made it to every AFC Asian Cup. Having reached the quarter-finals on three occasions and finished fourth in 2011, the country is eager to hit a new milestone and reach their first final in the competition.

Although Oman have never qualified from the group stage of the competition and Turkmenistan are still without an AFC Asian Cup win, Uzbekistan have to face record champions Japan, and should they proceed to the knock-out stages, tough challenges lie ahead for Hamrobekov and co.

Where and when to watch him

Uzbekistan vs Oman

Venue: Sharjah Stadium, Sharjah

Kick-off: January 9, 17:30 UTC+4

Uzbekistan vs Turkmenistan

Venue: Rashid Stadium, Dubai

Kick-off: January 13, 20:00 UTC+4

Uzbekistan vs Japan

Venue: Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain

Kick-off: January 17, 17:30 UTC+4