Iraqis beat UAE in qualifier

The UAE team suffered their first loss on their road to the 2012 London Olympics, going down 0-2 to Iraq in a Group B fixture of the AFC Asian Qualifiers at the Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain on Sunday night.

By James Jose

Published: Sun 27 Nov 2011, 11:48 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 8:15 AM

Abdulraheem Karrar scored in the 21st minute and Sabah Al Hlaichi finished off the contest with the second goal in the 77nd minute.

Earlier in the day, Australia and Uzbekistan were involved in a goalless draw in Parramatta.

The UAE Olympic team had come away with two clean sheets against Australia and Uzbekistan their first two games of the Group. The two points earned from those goalless draws had put them joint second along with Australia, with Uzbekistan topping the Group.

Meanwhile, Iraq had gone down 0-2 to Uzbekistan in their opening before holding Australia to a goalless draw.

UAE Olympic team coach Mahdi Ali had said before the game that this was a tough group and so it showed with Iraq going on the attack right from the beginning. And they went ahead in the 21st minute through Abdulraheem Karrar after the UAE defence faltered on a counter-attack.

A nice move from the right, Abdulraheem Karrar heeled it for his teammate but the first attempt was just about blocked by the UAE goalkeeper Khalid Eisa. And Abdulraheem Karrar pounced on the rebound and slide it into the goal.

Ali Ahmed Mabkhout came up with a couple of chances in the first half but his attempts went over the cross bar and was denied by the Iraq goalkeeper Jalal Hassan Hachim. Ahmed Khalil too muffed up a few opportunities.

The UAE Olympic team attacked more after the break but substitute Mohammed Abdulrahman, who came on for Mohammed Fawzi, shot wide of the post in the 64th minute. Three minutes later, Ali Ahmed Mabkhout dangerous pile driver just whizzed over the cross bar.

The UAE had more shots on goal with 11 and Iraq three, with 15 minutes left on the clock. But Iraq made it count by doubling their lead in the 77th minute through Sabah Al Hlaichi. Hlaichi intercepted a neat cross from the right and shot past goalkeeper Khalid Eisa.

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