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MD3 - Group G: UAE 5-0 Indonesia


Thursday, October 10, 2019
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Dubai: UAE’s Ali Mabkhout entered the history books with a hat-trick as UAE defeated Singapore 5-0 at Al Maktoum Stadium in Group G of the Asian Qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Asian Qualifiers on Thursday.


The UAE had labored to a 2-1 victory in Malaysia and looked to kickstart their campaign with a strong performance in Bert van Marwijk’s home debut. Meanwhile, having conceded three goals in each of their previous two games, the night was all about damage limitation for bottom-placed Indonesia.

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Bert van Marwijk's men had their first big chance at the quarter-hour mark as Jassim Yaqoob exchanged passes with Mabkhout before the former fired on the half volley, but watched his ball hit the outside netting.

The first half looked set to end in a stalemate as the hosts struggled to create chances, but a goalkeeping blunder from Indonesia’s Wawan Hendrawan gifted the UAE a goal with just five minutes to the break.

A mishit cross from Ali Saleh caught Hendrawan off guard, and while the Indonesia number one managed to recover, and make a save, he spilt the ball and it fell for Khalil Al Hammadi who was left with the simplest of tap-ins from point-blank range to open his international account.

Just as the first half ended, action was restarted with an Emirati goal six minutes into the second period. Mabkhout pounced on a misplaced pass deep into Indonesia’s half, charging into the box and exchanging passes with Al Hammadi who set up the forward to apply a chipped finish for his 52nd international goal.

Omar Abdulrahman was introduced in the 59th minute and made an immediate impact as he set up Saleh with a fine backheel pass inside the box, Saleh’s curled effort was handled by Hansamu Yama and the referee pointed to the spot, awarding the hosts a penalty kick.

It was a moment of history for Mabkhout who coolly slotted from 12 yards to become the UAE’s all-time top scorer with 53 goals, overtaking Adnan Al Talyani’s record of 52.

Indonesia had their best chance of the match in the 65th minute when substitute Beto curled a free-kick into the top corner, drawing a flying save from UAE goalkeeper Khalid Eisa.

Mabkhout capped a historic night in style, completing his hat-trick in the 72nd minute. The 29-year-old latched onto a Saleh through pass, rounded the goalkeeper and applied the finish to make it 4-0 for the Whites.

As the final whistle approached, the UAE rounded off the scoring through substitute Tareq Ahmed who followed through a spilled save from Ahmed Khalil’s shot to drive home the hosts fifth of the night.

The UAE climbed to the summit of the group with six points from two matches ahead of a trip to Thailand on Tuesday, while Indonesia remain rooted to the foot of the table with no points and they host Vietnam next.

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