SYDNEY (AFP) – Sayed Ahmed scored a glorious late chip as Bahrain shattered Qatar 2-1 and left the future World Cup hosts ruing a string of missed chances in their Asian Cup dead rubber on Monday.
With both teams already eliminated, the match in Sydney was heading for a draw until Ahmed spotted Qatar ‘keeper Qasem Burhan off his line and embarrassed him in the 82nd minute.
“This goal had a little bit of luck but also the player had the vision in that situation — he saw the goalkeeper off his line,” said Bahrain coach Marjan Eid.
The defeat was a disaster for Gulf Cup champions Qatar, who came to Australia with high hopes but leave with much to ponder as they build towards the 2022 World Cup.
“If you create chances and you don’t score, this is what happens most of the time, in my experience,” said Qatar boss Djamel Belmadi.
“If you create a lot of chances and you don’t score, finally you lose the game. That’s what happened to us today.”
With little but pride at stake at a cool, damp and sparsely attended Stadium Australia, both sides showed little caution as chances flowed at both ends.
Qatar’s Ali Asadalla had the goal at his mercy but chose to pass, and striker Mohammed Muntari nearly scored three with his head in the first half, crashing one effort off the post.
Hasan Al Haydos had a shot cleared off the line while at the other end, Bahrain’s Shubbar also shuddered the upright with a header before he made the breakthrough on 32 minutes.
The Moroccan-born Faouzi Aaish ran through a crowd of defenders and cut back to Shubbar, who checked before picking his spot and ramming Bahrain ahead.