Stange gone as Jordan sink Syria

Lynette Rowe
January 12, 2019

Hosts United Arab Emirates closed in on a place in the last 16 at the Asian Cup on Thursday as coach Bernd Stange paid the price for Syria's defeat to Jordan - becoming the second managerial casualty in just six days of competition. "Hopefully we can get the point we need to qualify for the next stage, that would be massive for Indian football".

"FIFA is therefore calling on all the relevant authorities (in Bahrain, Thailand and Australia) to take the necessary steps to ensure that Mr Hakeem Al-Araibi is allowed to return safely to Australia where he can resume his career as a professional footballer", world soccer's powerful governing body said in a statement.

India outshot their opponents in the first half, the UAE players went up to coach Alberto Zaccheroni at half time and confessed they had not expected India to be so sharp.

India will play Bahrain on Monday 14 January.

Sandesh Jhingan had the first big chance of the game as he escaped his marker during a corner, but failed to keep his header down.

India missed a number of good opportunities and also hit the underside of the crossbar before Ali Ahmed Mabkhout sealed the result with two minutes remaining. Udanta Singh passed the ball to Anirudh Thapa on the right flank and he sent in a curling cross, only for Chhetri to hit the ball straight at the keeper. "We have our fate in our own hands".

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However, in the 41st minute, Khalfan Mubarak profited from an indecision by Indian defenders Anas Edathodika and Subhashish Bose who let Mubarak steal the ball from their grasps, make a darting run into the box and finish superbly from a really tight angle. "We had four clear chances to score but UAE scored with the half chance they had", he said. However, India began from where they had left and pinned UAE on the back foot in the second. Jeje's volley went inches off the post.

"We have to pick ourselves up from this because no one else is voting to come and do that for us". Then the second goal off a set piece finished the game.

"We are only going to get better with these kind of games".

"The players made a lot of good things tonight for their country and for their fans to party tonight", said Borkelmans. UAE now have four points, India and Thailand have three each, while Bahrain are pushed down to the bottom with one point from two matches.

Few minutes later, a glorious chance presented itself to the Indian captain but he couldn't convert either.

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