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Group B: Oman beat Kuwait, Saudi Arabia back on track

Doha: Defending champions Oman scored twice in the first half to edge Kuwait 2-1 in Group B of the 2019 Gulf Cup at the Abdullah bin Khalifa Stadium on Saturday.

Saudi Arabia bounced back from their opening defeat against Kuwait to defeat Bahrain 2-0 as the race for Group B's semi-final spots will be decided on Monday.

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Kuwait 1-2 Oman

The defending champions converted their early dominance into the opening goal just 15 minutes in when they were awarded a spot-kick following Meshari Al Enezi's foul on Muhsen Al Ghassani. Abdulaziz Al Maqbali made no mistake, slotting the ball in at the low right corner.

Kuwait pushed forward in search of the equaliser but were hit with another goal in the 31st minute, again from the penalty spot after goalkeeper Hameed Yousef fouled Al Maqbali, who promptly converted.

The first chance for Kuwait came in the 40th minute when Yousef Nasser fired a powerful shot from outside the area but the ball rebounded off the right upright.

Nasser tried his luck again seconds before the half time whistle but Fayez Al Rusheidi blocked his shot from the edge of the area.

Kuwait continued to pressure in the second half and went close just three minutes in when Bader Al Mutawaa sent in a free-kick which Nasser failed to get on target.

The pressure paid off in the 78th minute when Nasser beat two defenders and fired from just outside the area into goal.

An equaliser, however, was not forthcoming and Kuwait now have to get a positive result against Bahrain on Monday to advance.

Bahrain 0-2 Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia started on the front foot and came close just three minutes in when Salem Al Dawsari's cross from the left was headed just wide by Salman Al Faraj.

Herve Renard's men thought that they had opened the scoring in the ninth minute when Mohammed Abdu finished with a first time shot from close range but the goal was ruled out for offside.

Bahrain started to get into the match gradually and tried their luck in the 26th minute when Thiago Augusto had a powerful shot from outside the area parried by Fawaz Al Qarni for a corner.

Saudi Arabia took the lead three minutes later when Nawaf Al Abid played a quick pass to Abdulla Al Hamdan, who fired a powerful left-foot shot past Bahrain goalkeeper Hamad Al Doseri.

Saudi Arabia continued to be the better side in the second period and after Al Dawsari was denied by the right post in the 52nd minute, Mohammed Abdu doubled the advantage by heading home a corner from Nawaf Al Abid six minutes later.

Group B - Kuwait 1-2 Oman; Bahrain 0-2 Saudi Arabia

Group A: Qatar vs UAE; Yemen vs Iraq
Group B: Kuwait vs Bahrain; Oman vs Saudi Arabia

Photos: AFP

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