UAE thrash Indonesia 5-0 in World Cup qualifier


UAE thrash Indonesia 5-0 in World Cup qualifier
UAE's midfielder Khalil Ibrahim (left) celebrates with his teammates after scoring a goal. (AFP)

Dubai - A hat trick from Ali Mabkhout and a goal each from Khalil Ibrahim and substitute Tariq Ahmed, gave the UAE a 5-0 win at the Al Maktoum Stadium

By James Jose

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Published: Thu 10 Oct 2019, 11:40 PM

Last updated: Fri 11 Oct 2019, 1:45 AM

After their opening day blues, normal service resumed and it was back to another day in the office for the UAE.
The Whites made sure that their struggles against Malaysia was a distant memory, with an emphatic victory over Indonesia in a Group G fixture of their joint AFC Asian Cup and World Cup qualifier on Thursday night.
A hat trick from Ali Mabkhout and a goal each from Khalil Ibrahim and substitute Tariq Ahmed, gave the UAE a 5-0 win at the Al Maktoum Stadium.
The UAE were playing their first qualifying fixture at home and the return to familiar environs helped them hit their strides.
If anything, they were a bit rusty against the Malaysians, but against the Indonesians, The Whites had dusted themselves off and found their mojo. And it worked to precision for coach Bert van Marwijk and his staff as he rang in the substitutions, bringing in Omar Abdulrahman and Ahmed Khalil.
The UAE had found their verve and turned on the engine almost immediately on kick-off.
They tested their visitors with the first attempt from a corner, two minutes in, but captain Walid Abbas's header from close range was saved by goalkeeper Wawan Hendrawan.
Indonesia were not to be laying back though, coming up with a couple of forays. But they were nipped in the bud by a resolute UAE backline.
Mabkhout had a chance on 14 minutes when Ali Saleh fired a long ball from the left. Mabkhout broke the offside trap and made a valiant attempt to get to the ball but it was a wee bit too far for the marksman.
The UAE midfield worked well with Khalil Ibrahim and Jassim Yaqoub being the standouts and the ideal foil for Mabkout.
The UAE saw another chance go abegging after Mabkout shot wide following a one-two with Yaqoub, on 21 minutes. The Whites felt they had been denied a penalty on 26 minutes after Mohamed Saleh Al Menhali was felled inside the box.
Mabkhout almost made Indonesia pay for a defensive blunder on 36 minutes but he chipped it over after Yaqoub had pounced on the lapse.
The UAE were finally up and running five minutes before the break after goalkeeper Hendrawan failed to make a collection following a teasing long ball from Ali Saleh from the left. And Ibrahim pounced on the offering. Hendrawan was to have a nightmarish night under the bar, going on to concede a further four goals.
Another defensive lapse right after the restart meant the UAE swelled the lead through Mabkhout, who fired home following a one-two with Ibrahim, who had latched onto the error, on 51 minutes.
A third almost came four minutes later but Ibrahim failed to connect after Yaqoub had sent it across from the left.
Marwijk threw in Omar Abdulrahman with two minutes to complete the hour and he had an almost instant impact. After Mabkhout had hit the woodwork, Omar conjured a clever backheel which Ali Saleh shot straight into captain Hansamu Yama's hand.
Referee Adham Makhadmeh pointed to the spot and Mabkhout came up with a cool finish, sending Hendrawan the wrong way, on 63 minutes.
Indonesia still posed a threat on 66 minutes when substitute Beto fired a dangerous freekick but shot stopper Khalid Eisa tipped it over the cross bar for a corner.
But the writing was clearly on the wall as Mabkhout cut it into goal after seeing through Hendrawan on 72 minutes after which substitute Tariq Ahmed rounded it off with the fifth in the final minute.

Mabkhout is UAE's leading scorer

Striker Ali Mabkhout has become the leading goal scorer for the UAE after his sublime hat trick against Indonesia in the Group G fixture of the AFC Asian Cup and World Cup qualifiers on Thursday night.
The Al Jazira marksman, who scored on 51, 63 and 72 minutes, as the UAE won 5-0 at the Al Maktoum Stadium, moved to 54 goals from 76 appearances for the UAE.
Mabkhout, who made his UAE debut at 19 years, one month and 10 days, under Srecko Katanec, went past Adnan Al Talyani.
Al Talyani, who turned out for Al Shaab, had been the leading scorer with 52 goals from 161 appearances.

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