Sunday, February 17, 2019 | ePaper

Late penalty gives hosts UAE 1-1 draw in Asian Cup opener

  • Print


AFP, Abu Dhabi :
Hosts United Arab Emirates salvaged a controversial 1-1 draw in their Asian Cup curtain-raiser against Bahrain on Saturday.
Substitute Ahmed Khalil smashed home a late penalty harshly awarded for a handball after Mohamed Alromaihi had given Bahrain a shock lead in Abu Dhabi.
The Emirates scored after just 14 seconds when the two teams met at the 2015 Asian Cup in Australia but there was little danger of that in a scruffy first half.
UAE's Ismail Alhammadi fired tamely at goalkeeper Sayed Alawi after six minutes before Ali Mabkhout blazed over.
Bahrain went close just before halftime when Komail Alaswad fizzed a free kick just over the bar.
The home side's profligacy continued as Mabkhout lashed wide from point-blank range.
That wastefulness came back to haunt the UAE after 78 minutes when Alromaihi bundled home after his initial header appeared to have crossed the line.
Sami Alhusaini almost equalised five minutes from time, only for Alawi to pull off a stunning block.
But Jordanian referee Adham Makhadmeh pointed to the spot five minutes from time for what appeared to be an unintentional handball to offer the hosts a lifeline.
Khalil, appearing in his 100th international, stepped up to rifle the spot kick into the top corner and send a partisan crowd wild.
UAE coach Alberto Zaccheroni steered Japan to the continental title in 2011, but his Emirates side have flat-lined in the run-up to this year's competition, scoring just 10 goals in 18 games under the Italian.
His hopes of going deep into the tournament have not been helped by the loss of mop-top talisman Omar Abdulrahman through injury.
The Emiratis were beaten finalists the last time the country hosted the Asian Cup in 1996, losing on penalties to Saudi Arabia.
They take on India and Thailand in their next two Group A fixtures but will need to improve drastically if they have designs on emulating their run to the last four at the last tournament in Australia where they stunned holders Japan in the quarter-finals.

More News For this Category

Brazil to play Panama in friendly at Porto

AP, Rio De Janeiro :Brazil's national team will play its first friendly of the year against Panama on March 23 in Portugal.The Brazilian football confederation said Friday the match will

Capoue sends Watford into FA Cup quarter-finals at QPR's expense

Capoue sends Watford into FA Cup quarter-finals at QPR's expense

Etienne Capoue's goal in first-half stoppage time was enough to give Watford a 1-0 win away to Queens Park Rangers (QPR) on Friday that saw the Hornets into the quarter-finals

Ronaldo on target as Juventus cruise before Atletico showdown

Ronaldo on target as Juventus cruise before Atletico showdown

AFP, Milan :Cristiano Ronaldo set up Paulo Dybala to score early and added one himself with defender Leonardo Bonucci also on target as Juventus surged 14 points clear in Serie

Lyon warm up for Barca with 2-1 win over Guingamp in France

Lyon warm up for Barca with 2-1 win over Guingamp in France

AP, Lyon :Lyon warmed up for its Champions League meeting with Barcelona by beating Guingamp 2-1 on Friday to strengthen its hold on third place in the French league.Goals from

Valencia too strong for Celtic to close on Europa League last 16

Valencia too strong for Celtic to close on Europa League last 16

Agency :Valencia closed in on the last 16 of the Europa League by inflicting just Celtic's second home defeat of the season with a 2-0 win in Glasgow on

Refugee Hakeem al-Araibi (left) signs a ball for Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison at Parliament House in Canberra, Australia on Thursday. Al-Araibi was detained in Thailand for three months under threat of extradition to Bahrain and has come to Canberra to shake hands with the Prime Minister and say thank you for his freedom.

Refugee Hakeem al-Araibi (left) signs a ball for Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison at Parliament House in Canberra, Australia on Thursday. Al-Araibi was detained in Thailand for three months under threat of extradition to Bahrain and has come to Canberra to shake hands with the Prime Minister and say thank you for his freedom.

.

Arsenal stunned by Borisov in Europa League

Arsenal stunned by Borisov in Europa League

Agency :Arsenal slumped to a 1-0 defeat at BATE Borisov in the first leg of the Europa League's round of 32 on Thursday, while crosstown rival Chelsea shook off

Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay to present joint 2030 World Cup bid

Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay to present joint 2030 World Cup bid

Agency :Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay are to submit a joint bid to host the 2030 World Cup, Chile's President Sebastian Pinera announced on Thursday.Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay had

French league to join lawsuit against racist Mbappe graffiti

French league to join lawsuit against racist Mbappe graffiti

Agency :The French football league (LFP) said on Thursday it ill join a lawsuit against the authors of racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic graffiti targeting Paris St Germain striker Kylian

UEFA investigate after Ramos says he got booked on purpose

UEFA investigate after Ramos says he got booked on purpose

Agency :UEFA has launched a disciplinary investigation that could rule Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos out of a potential Champions League quarter-final, first leg after he admitted getting booked