Oman's Ivankovic satisfied with three points, Vietnam's Park looks to Japan
Hanoi: Branko Ivankovic admitted that while Oman were not at their best in Thursday's 1-0 victory over Vietnam in Group B of the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar™, he was happy to leave My Dinh Stadium with all three points.
In a closely fought encounter, Khalid Al Hajri’s fine header from Salaah Al Yahyaei’s corner 20 minutes into the second half proved the difference between the sides as Oman won for the first time since defeating the same opponents in Muscat on Matchday Four.
That result, coupled with China PR’s 1-1 draw against Saudi Arabia later in the day, means the West Asians are guaranteed to finish fourth in Group B as they prepare to bring the curtain down on their campaign against the fifth-placed Chinese side in the Omani capital on Tuesday.
Bento hails Son after Korea Republic claim long-awaited win over IR Iran
Seoul: Korea Republic head coach Paulo Bento was full of praise for Son Heung-min after his captain’s goal on the stroke of half-time paved the way for a 2-0 win over the Islamic Republic of Iran in Group A of the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar™ on Thursday.
With both nations having already sealed their places at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 ™, Bento’s side went into their penultimate match second in the standings, two points behind an Iranian team they were aiming to beat for the first time in eight attempts in a run that stretched back to the 2011 AFC Asian Cup™.
And after dominating the opening 45 minutes at a sold-out Seoul World Cup Stadium, Son finally broke the deadlock with a fizzing shot from distance in first-half stoppage time as the Tottenham Hotspur forward’s goal set the Taeguk Warriors on their way to a rare victory over Team Melli.
Renard satisfied with Saudi Arabia's progress despite China PR draw
Sharjah: Saudi Arabia coach Herve Renard celebrated his team’s qualification for the FIFA World Cup™ despite a 1-1 draw with China PR in Sharjah on Thursday that saw the Gulf nation relinquish top spot in Group B of the AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar™ with one match remaining.
The draw with the already-eliminated Chinese saw the Saudis slip to second in the standings, one point behind Japan after the Samurai Blue defeated Australia in Sydney to book their berth at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and move into pole position.
Japan’s win over Graham Arnold’s side also meant Saudi Arabia had qualified for the FIFA World Cup ahead of Thursday’s game.
Japan’s Moriyasu credits players for Sydney success, Arnold looks ahead
Sydney: Delighted Japan head coach Hajime Moriyasu lauded the winning mindset of his players after they scored twice in the dying minutes to qualify for this year’s FIFA World Cup™ with a 2-0 AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar™ win over Australia on Thursday.
Substitute Kaoru Mitoma was the hero, breaking the deadlock from close range in the 89th minute before a low effort skidded on the greasy surface and under goalkeeper Mat Ryan four minutes into stoppage time as Japan celebrated their first away win over the Socceroos since 1998.
Lebanon's Hasek disappointed with heavy defeat to Syria
Sidon: Lebanon head coach Ivan Hasek was a disappointed man following his side’s 3-0 defeat at the hands of Syria in Group A of the AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar™ at the Saida Municipal Stadium on Thursday.
The defeat virtually ended Lebanon’s hope of reaching the FIFA World Cup finals for the first time ever as they now have an impossible task that would require them to win their final match and wait for the other results to go their way.
Hanoi: Khalid Al Hajri scored the only goal of the game as Oman defeated Vietnam 1-0 in Group B of the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar™ at the My Dinh Stadium on Thursday.
Following a first half of few chances in the Vietnamese capital, it was Branko Ivankovic’s Oman who netted decisively 20 minutes after the restart when Al Hajri headed home a corner from the right.
The win for Oman leaves them comfortably in fourth place in the standings ahead of their Matchday Ten meeting with fifth-placed China PR in Muscat on Tuesday, while bottom side Vietnam will round off their campaign away to Japan.
Group A: Iraq beat UAE to close in on playoff spot
Riyadh: Iraq revived their hopes of snatching the playoff spot in Group A of the AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar™ with a valuable 1-0 win over the United Arab Emirates at the King Fahd International Stadium on Thursday.
Following Syria’s 3-0 victory against Lebanon earlier in the day, the UAE went into the game with the knowledge that a draw would be all they needed to confirm a place against Group B third place Australia in the playoff stage.
Sharjah: Saudi Arabia’s FIFA World Cup qualification celebrations were muted on Thursday evening as Herve Renard’s side were forced to share a 1-1 draw with China PR in Sharjah in their Group B of AFC Asian Qualifiers - Road to Qatar clash after a late penalty from Zhu Chenjie.
Saleh Al Shehri put the Saudis, who had been confirmed as qualifying for the FIFA World Cup due to Japan’s win over Australia earlier in the day, in front in first half injury time before Zhu’s 82nd minute spot kick levelled the scores.
As a result the Japanese will go into Tuesday’s final round of matches with a one point lead over Saudi Arabia with Australia in third spot. China PR remain in fifth with the draw moving them onto six points from nine games.