Mutasim Abdullah (Dubai)
The teams of Iraq and Oman are speaking for the title of “Gulf 25”, in the expected confrontation on Thursday evening, at the Basra International Stadium, “the trunk of the palm tree”, in search of crowning the precious cup, in a confrontation that is the second between the two teams in the same tournament, after a goalless draw in the opening match, within The first round of the first group.
Iraq and Oman qualified for the final, after the former topped the first group standings, with 7 points from three matches, as they tied with Oman 0-0, then beat Saudi Arabia 2-0 and Yemen 5-0, before overcoming Qatar 2-1 in the final. semi final.
On the other hand, the Oman national team ranked second in Group A and also has 7 points from three matches, after it drew with Iraq 0-0 and beat Yemen 3-2 and Saudi Arabia 2-1, before stripping Bahrain of the title of the last edition, by winning 1. -0 in the semi-finals.
The result of the tie that settled the last three confrontations that brought together the two teams in the Gulf Cup tournaments will be “forbidden” in tonight’s match, in which the “Mesopotamia Lions” are looking to regain the absent title since the last coronation in the “Gulf 9” in Saudi Arabia in 1988, and Al Dhafra with the fourth title in its tally after copying Gulf 5 in Iraq 1979, Gulf 7 in Oman 1984 and Gulf 9.
On the other hand, the “Omani Red” is chasing the third title in its career after the “Gulf 19” editions in Muscat in 2009 as “champion”, by defeating Saudi Arabia 6-5 in the final by penalty kicks, and “Gulf 23” in Kuwait 2017, by defeating the UAE 5 4- In the final with a penalty shootout, and he is in the fifth final in his history.
Iraq and Oman met in 10 previous confrontations in the Gulf Cup tournaments, since the first confrontation in the “Gulf 4” in Qatar in 1976, which ended with the victory of the “Mesopotamia Lions” with a score of 4-0, and until the opening match in the current version of the “Gulf 25” in Iraq, which was decided in a draw. passive.
Iraq excels with 4 victories, compared to two victories for Oman in the “Gulf 17” with a score of 3-1, and “Gulf 19” with a score of 4-0, while the tie was settled 0-0, 1-1 and 0-0 the last three confrontations.
The Lions of Mesopotamia, led by its Spanish coach Jesus Casas, in addition to the great and expected public support in the final, with the presence of more than 65,000 fans, is counting on the completion of the ranks of its team, except for the absence of Riwan Amin due to injury, and the striker Ayman Hussein, the top scorer in the list of scorers with 3, stands out in the Iraq squad. Goals, while the defense line is considered the “password” in the advantage of Iraq, which conceded a single goal on the way to the final.
In turn, the Croatian Branko Ivankovic, coach of Oman, relies on the “collective performance” of “Al-Ahmar”, and the remarkable brilliance of a number of its most prominent elements, starting with goalkeeper Ibrahim Al-Mukhaini, next to striker Al-Mundhir Al-Alawi, and the stars of the middle Salah Al-Yahya’i, Arshad Al-Alawi, and Jamil Al-Yahmadi, who scored the goal of qualifying for the tournament. The final against Bahrain 1-0 from a missile shot.
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