MD5 - Group B: Kuwait 9-0 Chinese Taipei
Kuwait City: Kuwait strolled to a comfortable 9-0 victory over Chinese Taipei on Matchday Five of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Asian Qualifiers on Thursday.
The visitors arrived to the Kuwaiti capital on the back of a 7-1 defeat by Australia on the previous matchday, while Kuwait’s last outing saw them hold Jordan to a goalless draw last month.
Despite the big final score, it wasn’t until halfway through the opening 45 minutes that the home crowd celebrated the first goal of the night.
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Veteran Bader Al Mutawa sent Mubarak Al Faneeni through down the right and the winger crossed for Youssef Naser whose diving header beat goalkeeper Wen-chieh Pan to open the scoring.
Al Faneeni got his second assist just before the break, setting up Fahad Al Ansari to unleash a thunderous drive that nestled into the top corner to double Kuwait’s lead in the 42nd minute.
Coach Thamer Enad’s side emerged from the restart a different side, piling the pressure on their opponents and bagging seven more in the remaining 45 minutes. Al Faneeni turned from creator to scorer, getting his goal three minutes into the second half after collecting the ball inside the box and slotting home.
The Kuwaiti faithful at Kuwait Sports Club Stadium rejoiced as skipper Al Mutawa scored the pick of the goals, the 35-year-old calmly controlling a long pass and lobbing the goalkeeper to record his 57th international goal and Kuwait’s fourth.
Naser beat the goalkeeper from close range with a dinked effort at the hour mark before Faisal Zaid added his name to the scoresheet three minutes later, making it 6-0.
Replacing the iconic Al Mutawa, substitute Shabib Al Khaldi marked his international debut with a goal, sweeping home Sami Al Sanea’s cross from the right flank for the hosts’ seventh goal.
Chinese Taipei’s misery was compounded as another Al Sanea cross invited trouble and Wei-chuan Chen inadvertently converted the ball past his own goalkeeper while attempting to clear the cross.
With nine minutes to go, Tin-yang Chen committed a fatal mistake, mishitting his back pass and allowing substitute Faisal Ajab to slot home and round off the scoring at 9-0.
With a superior goal difference, Kuwait now overtake Jordan into second place after Al Nashama lost at home to Australia 1-0.
The Socceroos lead the group after four matches for each team with 12 points, while Kuwait and Jordan have seven. Chinese Taipei remain without a point from four.
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