Asian Cup 2019 – Qatar Champions of Asia

Japan and Qatar met in the final o the Asian Cup 2019 a the Sheikh Zayed Sports City stadium to play for the right to be Asian Champions. Japan overcame Iran in the semi final while Qatar was the winner of the blockade derby against the host name UAE.

In the 12th minute Al Moez took control of the ball and was given enough time to bring it under control before a bicycle kick put it past Japanese keeper Shuichi Gonda.

Qatar’s first goal was against the run of play but did give the Qatari’s the upper hand soon after as the Japanese seemed rattled.

In the 26th minute Abelaziz al Hatim put Qatar ahead by two when he struck from outside the boss to the right of the Japanese keeper. The similarities between the two goals was that Japanese captainMaya Yoshida gave the Qatar players space.

Qatar went close again when the Qatari captain, Al Haydos, struck the post after picking up a bouncing ball in the penalty box. The first half lacked any serious Japanese threat on the Qatar goal.

Japan didn’t waste time int he second half to get on the front foot and find a way to get back into the match. It took Qatar ten minutes into the second half before they put on an offensive display that could have ended the competition. It seemed clear that at this point Qatar would be relying on counter attacking football to inflict the fatal goal.

In the 68th minute the Samurai finally broke through and scored the first goal of the Asian cup on the Qatari side. Takumi Minamino received the ball on top of the 18 yard line and successfully turned in Japan’s first of the match.

The Japanese as expected continued to push for the equalizer and Qatar was sitting back protecting the lead. Qatar were given a lifeline when in the 81st minute the Uzbek referee gave a penalty for an apparent hand ball. Although the ball did strike the hand of Yoshido in the box, it was yet another controversial penalty call.

Akram Afif stepped up and put Qatar up 3-1. Game over.

Qatar are crowned Asian Champions for the first time in the history of the Asian Cup. Japan failed to win it for a record fifth time.