UAE 1-0 Australia

Al Ain: Australia’s defence of their AFC Asian Cup title came to an end on Friday evening as Ali Mabkhout’s second half goal earned tournament hosts the United Arab Emirates a 1-0 win over the Socceroos and set up a semi-final meeting with Qatar.

Mabkhout took advantage of an under-hit back pass midway through the second half to steal in behind the Australian defence and round Maty Ryan to register the only strike of the game.

Alberto Zaccheroni’s side will now take on Qatar with a place in the final at stake as the hosts moved one step closer to emulating their run to the deciding game when the tournament was last held in the UAE in 1996.

With Tom Rogic unavailable due to suspension, Graham Arnold went for a tactical switch that saw Australia start with Jamie Maclaren and Apostolos Giannou paired together in attack while Robbie Kruse and Chris Ikonomidis patrolled the flanks.

There were changes, too, for the hosts. Ismaeil Mattar made his first start of the tournament alongside Mabkhout as Zaccheroni also introduced Walid Abbas, Fares Juma, Majed Hassan and Mohamed Ahmad as he made five changes to the side that eventually saw off Kyrgyz Republic.

 

Zaccheroni’s alterations were the first to take effect as the Emiratis started brightly. With less than a minute on the clock, Ismail Al Hammadi controlled Ali Hassan’s ball into the area before forcing Ryan to palm the ball clear.

In a lively opening, Trent Sainsbury sent his looping header of Ikonomidis’ corner over the bar as both teams started with few inhibitions.

Ryan was on hand once more to deny the hosts as the clock ticked towards the 20 minute mark when Al Hammadi, again, threatened after stepping inside Sainsbury to fire off an effort that the Socceroos keeper pushed away.

 

Neither side was prepared to sit back in an open and entertaining first half, with Australia taking advantage of the space in midfield to dominate for periods without finding a way through the well-drilled Emirati defence.

With five minutes left in the half the Socceroos did find a way through as Giannou was presented with the time to set his sight on goal, but Khalid Eisa swatted that shot clear. At the other end, Ali Mabkhout missed the chance of the half, heading over from close range.

 

Australia ramped up the pressure in the second period as Degenek and Jackson Irvine both saw their headers from corners miss the target and Ikonomidis dragged his shot just wide. Giannou then had the ball in the net following the introduction of Mathew Leckie for Maclaren, but his effort was ruled out for offside.

There was to be no such intervention, though in the 68th minute when Mabkhout put the UAE ahead with their first opening of the second period, the Al Jazira forward alert enough to step in to intercept Degenek’s backpass before rounding Ryan to score.

 

Australia grew increasingly desperate as the clock ticked down, with Arnold throwing on Awer Mabil and Andrew Nabbout in an attempt to claw back an equaliser but the Socceroos came up short to end their reign as Asian champions and allow the UAE advance.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation WEBSITE

UAE 3-2 Kyrgyz Republic (After Extra Time)

Abu Dhabi: Host nation the United Arab Emirates kept alive their AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 title ambitions on Monday, as an extra-time Ahmed Khalil penalty helped secure a hard-fought 3-2 win over Kyrgyz Republic and a place in the quarter-finals.

In truth, Alberto Zaccheroni’s side struggled for large periods of a game which saw Khalil’s success from 12 yards seal their progress only after Kyrgyz Republic had twice come from behind following Khamis Esmaeel’s early opener at Abu Dhabi’s Zayed Sports City Stadium.

On a night when tournament debutants Kyrgyz Republic shone brightly, the UAE’s victory sets up a quarter-final showdown with Australia in Al Ain on Friday, and maintained Emirati hopes of claiming a first-ever Continental crown.

Entering the game as Group A winners, the UAE began brightly, and after Valeri Kichin’s splendid last-ditch tackle had robbed Ali Mabkhout when the striker was bearing down on goal, they went ahead in the 13th minute through a fine Esmaeel header from Ismaeil Matar’s corner.

Having impressed during the group stage, Kyrgyz Republic bounced back in fine fashion shortly before the half-hour mark, Akhlidin Israilov’s delightful pass finding Akhlidin Israilov who rounded UAE goalkeeper Khalid Eisa and finished with aplomb to draw his side level.

 

Clearly buoyed by the equaliser, Kyrgyz Republic refused to concede an inch to their opponents, although Matar threatened to restore the UAE’s lead when he fizzed a shot from distance narrowly over as the first half drew to a close.

After the break, Mabkhout almost immediately headed Bandar Mohammed’s pinpoint cross inches wide of the post, before a curling Kichin delivery eluded its intended target and thudded against Eisa’s crossbar with the custodian beaten.

However, any momentum Kyrgyz Republic had been building was brought to a sudden halt on 64 minutes as the UAE went ahead once again, this time Mabkhout collecting Amer Abdulrahman’s pass and drilling the ball beyond Kutman Kadyrbekov in the Kyrgyz Republic goal.

 

To their eternal credit, Kyrgyz Republic refused to buckle, and after Vitalij Lux, who bagged a hat-trick last time out, had flashed a late effort agonisingly wide, Tursunali Rustamov headed home a last gasp equaliser following Anton Zemlianukhin’s cross to send the pulsating match into extra-time.

Mabkhout spurned an early chance in the second minute of the additional 30, before – just 60 seconds later – the striker was brought down in the area by Bekzhan Sagynbaev. Substitute Ahmed Khalil stepped up to convert the resulting penalty and put his side ahead yet again.

 

Bakhtiyar Duyshobekov’s header then brushed an upright and the seemingly omnipresent Rustamov crashed a shot against the bar in the final seconds.

However, it was not to be though for the Central Asians, as the UAE held firm to seal their ticket through to the last eight and signal Kyrgyz Republic’s departure from a competition in which they had often more than held their own.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation WEBSITE

Thailand 1-2 China PR

Al Ain: Xiao Zhi came off the bench to inspire a second half come back for Marcello Lippi’s side on Sunday evening as China PR handed Thailand a 2-1 defeat to advance to the quarter-finals of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019.

Guangzhou R&F striker Xiao levelled the scores in thr 67th minute after Supachai Chaided had given Thailand the lead just after the half hour mark and Gao Lin secured the win for China with a penalty 20 minutes from time.

Xiao’s goal – the 100th of the tournament so far – was key for a China side that dominated the second half but were unable to find a way past Siwarak Tedsungnoen in the Thai goal until the arrival of the veteran forward, who finally ended Thailand’s resistence.

In the end it was a deserved win for a Chinese side that welcomed back Wu Lei to the starting line-up after missing the 2-0 loss against Korea Republic with a shoulder injury while Thailand called up Supachai for the injured Adisak Kraisorn.

Play quickly switched to the other end, with Supachai pushing his shot wide of Yan’s goal after Teerasil Dangda’s return header found the Buriram United man just the right side of Zhang Linpeng.

Supachai made amends in the 31st minute, however, as he gave Thailand the lead. The Chinese defence failed to properly clear Teerathon’s corner and, after Thitiphan Puangchan’s shot ended up at Supachai’s feet. He made no mistake on the turn from seven yards out.

 

Five minutes later Supachai could have added a second, only to drag his attempt from distance across Yan’s goal as the Chinese struggled in their attempt to win their first AFC Asian Cup knockout game since 2004.

Lippi’s team grew increasingly desperate throughout the second half and Wu Lei’s lack of match sharpness was becoming ever more apparent. The 27-year-old somehow missed a straightforward chance three minutes after the interval from six yards out after fine approach play by Gao Lin down the left.

 

China continued to press, with Yu heading wide before Siwarak denied the Beijing Guoan man with his feet following Feng Xiaoting’s cross, but eventually the equaliser came as Lippi intervened from the bench.

Yu Dabao made way for Xiao Zhi and, within three minutes, China were level as Zheng Zhi clipped his cross in from the right and Xiao scored on the rebound after Siwarak had saved the striker’s initial downward header.

 

By the 71st minute China were in front when Gao Lin (pictured above) picked himself up to score from the spot after having his heels clipped in the area by Tanaboon, the veteran forward firing high into the top corner to give his team the lead their second half performance deserved.

China threatened to add to the scoreline as the Thais grew increasingly ragged, although a flying save from Yan deep into injury time following Pansa Hemviboon’s shot ensured the East Asians progressed.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation WEBSITE

UAE 1-1 Thailand

Al Ain: Hosts the United Arab Emirates and Thailand both booked their places in the knockout stage of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 on Monday evening as a 1-1 draw at Hazza bin Zayed Stadium was enough to ensure both nations progressed.

Ali Mabkhout put Alberto Zaccheroni’s side ahead after seven minutes but Thitiphan Puangjan struck four minutes from time to earn the Thais a point that sees them take second place in Group A, following India’s late loss to Bahrain, thanks to a better head-to-head record.

While the UAE have qualified for the knockout phase for the second tournament in a row, Thailand will be featuring in the next round for the first time since reaching the semi-finals in 1972.

The hosts made the perfect start when, with many in the crowd of almost 18,000 still finding their seats, they hit the back of Siwarak Tedsungnoen’s goal.

Ismail Al Hammadi burst into the area and attempted to clip the ball over the Thai keeper, only for the ball to come back off the crossbar. But Mabkhout rose to head home the rebound from inside the six-yard box.

Khalfan Mubarak sought to double the lead 11 minutes later when he twisted his way past the Thai defence only to send a weak shot trundling through to Siwarak.

It took until almost midway through the half for the Thais to spark to life. Chanathip Songkrasin’s alertness allowed him to dispossess the UAE defence and feed Teerasil Dangda and his pass sent Adisak Kraisorn through on goal, only for Khalid Eisa to be equal to the task.

That was just a preview to the danger posed by Chanathip and, with four minutes left in the half, the Consadole Sapporo midfielder unlocked the UAE defence to secure the equaliser.

The midfielder’s deft ball into the area caused Mohamed Ahmad to panic and, in the ensuing mix-up, Thitiphan Puangjan slipped the ball past Eisa, with his strike delighting the vociferous band of Thais at the far end of the stadium.

A draw would suit both sides but, early in the second half, the UAE looked determined to reclaim the lead. Mabkhout was again the most likely source of a goal for the home side, and the Al Jazira man’s long-range strike had to be palmed around the post by Siwarak.

Teerasil threatened at the other end as he met Teerathon Bumathan’s corner, only for the ball to balloon high over the bar, and, despite attempts from both coaches to inject some urgency from the bench, the game trundled towards a draw that saw both teams go through.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation WEBSITE

India 0-2 UAE

UAE-India-Goal

Abu Dhabi: The United Arab Emirates stayed on course for a place in the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 Round of 16 after defeating India 2-0 in a Group A clash at the Zayed Sports City Stadium on Thursday.

On a night of high-octane entertainment at a wonderfully atmospheric Zayed Sports City Stadium, goals from Khalfan Mubarak and Ali Mabkhout helped secure the vital victory, one which reignites the UAE’s aspirations of reaching the knockout phase following a 1-1 draw with regional rivals Bahrain on Matchday One.

With all still to play for in Monday’s final set of fixtures, the table-topping Emiratis are on four points, one ahead of India in second and third-placed Thailand after the Southeast Asians beat Bahrain 1-0 earlier in the day.

Under the watchful gaze of CONCACAF referee Cesar Ramos, it was India that fashioned the game’s first genuine chance when Ashique Kuruniyan darted into the area before unleashing a fierce drive which forced goalkeeper Khalid Eisa into a fine save on 11 minutes.

As the Emiratis struggled to gain a foothold, Eisa was called into action once again in the 23rd minute, this time reacting superbly to repel a powerful Sunil Chhetri header.

However, and despite their initial woes, the UAE went ahead shortly before half-time. Lacklustre Indian defending allowed Ali Mabkhout space in which to find Mubarak who fired home past Indian custodian Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.

In the final moments of a pulsating first period, Chhetri came within inches of drawing his side level, but his drilled effort fizzed just wide of Eisa’s far post.

The game’s frenetic pace showed no sign of abating after the break, as first India substitute Jeje Lalpekhlua thumped a shot narrowly off target and then Udanta Singh rattled the UAE bar with a rasping drive from a narrow angle.

India’s incessant search for an equaliser was, nevertheless, periodically punctuated by a spell of relative UAE control, and, with Mubarak continuing to shine, Ismail Al Hamadi’s 74th minute shot cannoned of a post and then Gurpreet before rebounding to safety.

With India failing to find any inroads into a resolute UAE defence, the UAE duly doubled their advantage in the final moments when Mabkhout expertly converted Ali Salmin’s pass to assure his side of the victory despite Mohamed Gharib crashing the ball against his own woodwork deep into stoppage time.

The UAE will now look to guarantee their place in the Round of 16 when they face Thailand in their final group stage game on Monday, while India – still well and truly in contention for a place in the knockout phase – are set to play Bahrain in Sharjah on the same day.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation Website

#AFCAsianCup2019 UAE 3-2 Kyrgyz Republic (After Extra Time)

Abu Dhabi: Host nation the United Arab Emirates kept alive their AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 title ambitions on Monday, as an extra-time Ahmed Khalil penalty helped secure a hard-fought 3-2 win over Kyrgyz Republic and a place in the quarter-finals.

In truth, Alberto Zaccheroni’s side struggled for large periods of a game which saw Khalil’s success from 12 yards seal their progress only after Kyrgyz Republic had twice come from behind following Khamis Esmaeel’s early opener at Abu Dhabi’s Zayed Sports City Stadium.

On a night when tournament debutants Kyrgyz Republic shone brightly, the UAE’s victory sets up a quarter-final showdown with Australia in Al Ain on Friday, and maintained Emirati hopes of claiming a first-ever Continental crown.

Entering the game as Group A winners, the UAE began brightly, and after Valeri Kichin’s splendid last-ditch tackle had robbed Ali Mabkhout when the striker was bearing down on goal, they went ahead in the 13th minute through a fine Esmaeel header from Ismaeil Matar’s corner.

Having impressed during the group stage, Kyrgyz Republic bounced back in fine fashion shortly before the half-hour mark, Akhlidin Israilov’s delightful pass finding Akhlidin Israilov who rounded UAE goalkeeper Khalid Eisa and finished with aplomb to draw his side level.

 

Clearly buoyed by the equaliser, Kyrgyz Republic refused to concede an inch to their opponents, although Matar threatened to restore the UAE’s lead when he fizzed a shot from distance narrowly over as the first half drew to a close.

After the break, Mabkhout almost immediately headed Bandar Mohammed’s pinpoint cross inches wide of the post, before a curling Kichin delivery eluded its intended target and thudded against Eisa’s crossbar with the custodian beaten.

However, any momentum Kyrgyz Republic had been building was brought to a sudden halt on 64 minutes as the UAE went ahead once again, this time Mabkhout collecting Amer Abdulrahman’s pass and drilling the ball beyond Kutman Kadyrbekov in the Kyrgyz Republic goal.

 

To their eternal credit, Kyrgyz Republic refused to buckle, and after Vitalij Lux, who bagged a hat-trick last time out, had flashed a late effort agonisingly wide, Tursunali Rustamov headed home a last gasp equaliser following Anton Zemlianukhin’s cross to send the pulsating match into extra-time.

Mabkhout spurned an early chance in the second minute of the additional 30, before – just 60 seconds later – the striker was brought down in the area by Bekzhan Sagynbaev. Substitute Ahmed Khalil stepped up to convert the resulting penalty and put his side ahead yet again.

 

Bakhtiyar Duyshobekov’s header then brushed an upright and the seemingly omnipresent Rustamov crashed a shot against the bar in the final seconds.

However, it was not to be though for the Central Asians, as the UAE held firm to seal their ticket through to the last eight and signal Kyrgyz Republic’s departure from a competition in which they had often more than held their own.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation WEBSITE

#AFCAsianCup2019 Thailand 1-2 China PR

Al Ain: Xiao Zhi came off the bench to inspire a second half come back for Marcello Lippi’s side on Sunday evening as China PR handed Thailand a 2-1 defeat to advance to the quarter-finals of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019.

Guangzhou R&F striker Xiao levelled the scores in thr 67th minute after Supachai Chaided had given Thailand the lead just after the half hour mark and Gao Lin secured the win for China with a penalty 20 minutes from time.

Xiao’s goal – the 100th of the tournament so far – was key for a China side that dominated the second half but were unable to find a way past Siwarak Tedsungnoen in the Thai goal until the arrival of the veteran forward, who finally ended Thailand’s resistence.

In the end it was a deserved win for a Chinese side that welcomed back Wu Lei to the starting line-up after missing the 2-0 loss against Korea Republic with a shoulder injury while Thailand called up Supachai for the injured Adisak Kraisorn.

Play quickly switched to the other end, with Supachai pushing his shot wide of Yan’s goal after Teerasil Dangda’s return header found the Buriram United man just the right side of Zhang Linpeng.

Supachai made amends in the 31st minute, however, as he gave Thailand the lead. The Chinese defence failed to properly clear Teerathon’s corner and, after Thitiphan Puangchan’s shot ended up at Supachai’s feet. He made no mistake on the turn from seven yards out.

 

Five minutes later Supachai could have added a second, only to drag his attempt from distance across Yan’s goal as the Chinese struggled in their attempt to win their first AFC Asian Cup knockout game since 2004.

Lippi’s team grew increasingly desperate throughout the second half and Wu Lei’s lack of match sharpness was becoming ever more apparent. The 27-year-old somehow missed a straightforward chance three minutes after the interval from six yards out after fine approach play by Gao Lin down the left.

 

China continued to press, with Yu heading wide before Siwarak denied the Beijing Guoan man with his feet following Feng Xiaoting’s cross, but eventually the equaliser came as Lippi intervened from the bench.

Yu Dabao made way for Xiao Zhi and, within three minutes, China were level as Zheng Zhi clipped his cross in from the right and Xiao scored on the rebound after Siwarak had saved the striker’s initial downward header.

 

By the 71st minute China were in front when Gao Lin (pictured above) picked himself up to score from the spot after having his heels clipped in the area by Tanaboon, the veteran forward firing high into the top corner to give his team the lead their second half performance deserved.

China threatened to add to the scoreline as the Thais grew increasingly ragged, although a flying save from Yan deep into injury time following Pansa Hemviboon’s shot ensured the East Asians progressed.

 

Source : AFC Asian Football Confederation WEBSITE