Our national team disappointed 15,000 Iraqi fans gathered in the Abbasien Stadium in Damascus by tying with Pakistan in a scoreless game. The absence of effective play at the goal line, the lack of team focus, and the overall weakness and indifference of the team was clearly due to their previous trouncing of Pakistan in Lahore by a score of 7–1. Pakistani fans were elated and jumped onto the playing field in celebration.
Despite the tie, our Iraqi national team has qualified for the third phase, and is one of 11 teams to make it past the first qualifiers. Our team will play its first game on February 6, 2008.
Here are the results of the Asian teams:
In Al Sadd, the Qatari team crushed Sri Lanka 5–0. Sebastian Soria scored first in the 4th minute, while Sayyed Bashir added two goals in the 17th and 55th minutes. Then Soria added his second goal and the fourth for Qatar in the 76th minute. Saad Sattam Al Shamri ended the match with a fifth goal in the 85th minute.
In Selangor, the Bahrain team tied with Malaysia 0–0. Both sides played with only ten players after the expulsion of Bahraini player Mahmoud Abdulrahman (“Ringo”) and Malaysian player Safwan Adel Abdul-Razzaq.
In Taipei, the Uzbek team beat the hosting Taiwanese team 2–0. The two goals were scored by Inomov in the 79th minute and Suyunov in the 89th minute.
In Hong Kong, the Hong Kong team won against East Timor 8–1. The Hong Kong goals were made by Yee in the 3rd minute, Ki in the 6th, 79th, and 87th minutes, Tehau in the 50th minute, Shawi in the 68th and 71st minutes, and Wawy in the 83rd minute. East Timor’s only goal was scored by Ribeiro in the 53rd minute.
In Ashgabat, the home team won against the Cambodian team 4–1. Nasirov scored in the 41st minute, Jiforquean in the 49th and 66th minutes, and Mamedaly Karadanov in the 74th minute for Turkmenistan. Shamil Nasa scored in the 12th minute for Cambodia.
In Dushanbe, the Tajikistan team won at home against the Bengali team 5–0. Goals were scored by Hakimov in minutes 47, 49, and 76 (a penalty kick), Meheidinenov in minute 51 and Vasiev in minute 71.
In Maldives, the Yemeni team lost to hosting Maldives 0–2. Winning goals were scored by Shamil Qasim in the 15th minute and Ishfaq in the 66th minute.
In Kathmandu, Oman beat Nepal 2–0. Hasim Saleh scored in the 28th minute and Mohammed Mubarak in the 54th minute.
In Kuala Lumpur, the Chinese team won against the national team of Myanmar 4–0. Goals were scored by Wu Yan in the 13th minute, Liu in the 14th minute, Jing in the 35th minute, and Zhang Yaokun in the 39th minute (from a penalty kick).
In Abu Dhabi, the Emirates team restored their fans’ confidence by beating the Vietnamese team 5–0.
In Jordan, the Jordanian team needed more time and penalty kicks to qualify for the second round, after advancing 2–0 in regulation time and by the same score in overtime. Both teams fought it out in penalty kicks, with Jordan finally capturing the win at 6–5.
Three matches were postponed: India, Lebanon (4-1 in the first round for Lebanon), and North Korea, Mongolia (4-1 in the first round for Korea), Singapore and Palestine (4-0 in the first round for Singapore).