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Late own-goal helps reigning Asian champions Qatar beat Oman and qualify for last 8

Mohammad Amin

DOHA: A slice of luck favored reigning Asian champions Qatar in their 2-1 win over Oman on Friday as they advanced into the quarterfinals from Group A of 2021 FIFA Arab Cup Qatar at the Education City Stadium. 

A defensive error by their opponents that led to a stoppage time own-goal helped Felix Sanchez’s side cruise into the last eight stage.

The hosts had won their opening match against Bahrain 1-0 on November 30.

Qatar took the lead when Akram Afif scored from the spot in the 32nd minute after a clumsy foul from Oman’s Ahmed Al Khamisi inside the 18-yard-box.

But the euphoria didn’t last long as substitute Khalid Al Hajri cancelled the lead with a firm header in the 74th. 

When it seemed that the match would end in a 1-1 stalemate, substitute Fahmi Durbin scored an own-goal (90+8 minutes).

Fahmi attempted to clear a dangerous cross into the area, but the Omani defender saw his header hit the crossbar and bounce down behind the goal line.

Brazilian referee Wilton Sampaio confirmed the ball had crossed the line after VAR advice.

The victory took Qatar’s points tally to six points from two victories in as many matches.

Iraq, Bahrain in goalless draw

Iraq played out a goalless draw against Bahrain at the Al Thumama Stadium earning them their second point in Group A.

In Group B, United Arab Emirates notched up their second win of the group stage with a late goal.

Khalil Ibrahim struck in the 93rd minute to give the UAE a 1-0 win over Mauritania at Stadium 974.

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