For Australia, this is the last option left to compete in the World Cup for the fifth consecutive year. For the United Arab Emirates, this is your chance to approach the first World Cup since the 1990 baptism.
There is no room for error when they meet in the Asian playoffs in Qatar on Tuesday. The Asian playoffs will be defined by Peruvian opponents in another playoff six days later. The winner will have access to Group D of the World Cup, where France, Denmark and Tunisia are waiting.RELATED
Both teams will finish in 3rd place in the Asian qualifying and will fight for the right to play 5th place from South America.
After reaching the ideal score in the first three games of the third round of Asia (extending the winning streak to 11), Australia won one of the next seven games, lagging behind Saudi Arabia and Japan in the group. rice field.
This accused them of going through another playoff for World Cup tickets. But unlike last time, when Australia defeated Syria and Honduras in a two-legged series in the continent-to-continent playoffs, both meetings will be a single match and will take place in Qatar.
“The importance is absolute,” said Australian manager Graham Arnold and Guus Hiddink’s assistant when Soccer intervened for the 2006 World Cup players and nation.
Australia returned to track with a 2-1 victory over Jordan in a friendly match last week and a second victory in eight games.
The anteroom was not ideal for Australians. For personal reasons, they will miss Tom Rogic on the steering wheel, who is the Scottish champion Celtic. Also excluded were Aaron Mooy and Matt Ryan, who had experience in the English Premier League after a season of little play.
Arnold says playing 14 of 18 qualifying games outside Australia due to the border restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic helped to strengthen the team’s cohesiveness.
For Emirates, being very close to home is the motivation.
The entire United Nations has purchased over 5,000 tickets, allowing fans to make a short trip to Qatar for the playoffs. They sold out quickly. They hope to return to November, when Qatar will host the first World Cup in the Middle East.
Argentine Rodolforau Barena, who replaced Bert van Marwijk in February as Emirates manager, defeated South Korea to take third place in the group.
“Our confidence is through the roof,” said Captain Walid Abbas. “There are players who have enough international experience to cope with the pressure.”
“But it’s 90 minutes, and the team that best deals with those pressures, and the team that takes advantage of the opportunity, will be the winner,” he added.
Emirates has summoned Omar Abdullah Man, a creative midfielder who was declared the best player in Asia in 2016. Injuries have plagued Abdullahman in recent years, but he steps on the pitch to form a partnership with Ali Mabkhout.
Mabkhout, 31, has scored 81 international goals, exceeding the total of the Australian team. He gave Emirates a 1-0 victory when the team entered the 2019 Asian Cup quarterfinals, scoring a goal that knocked out the defending tournament champion.
“Given the close matches of recent years, I think they are two very close teams and I think they are third in each group,” Mabkhout said. “180 minutes from the World Cup is a rare opportunity. We are masters of fate.”