2022 World Cup Qualifiers: UAE ease past Thailand to consoldiate second spot

Bert van Marwijk’s team registered yet another win as they downed the War Elephants…

UAE were in sublime form once again as they eased past Thailand 3-1 on Monday evening at the Zabeel Stadium to remain second in Group G of the 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup joint qualifiers.

Goals from Caio (14’), Fabio Lima (34’) in the first half put UAE in a strong position before Suphanath Mueanta pulled one back nine minutes after the break.

However, deep into the stoppage time, Mohammed Jumaa added his name on the score-sheet to make it 3-1 for the hosts. UAE are placed second in Group G, two points behind Vietnam and are up against Indonesia on Friday before facing Vietnam on the final matchday – 15th June.

Caio Canedo made his first competitive start for UAE and ensured that he stole the headlines with a goal in the 14th minute. 20 minutes later, it was the turn of another Brazilian-born naturalised player in Fabio Lima as he got on the end of a cross from Bandar Al Ahbabi to nod home with goalkeeper Siwarak Tedsungnoen beaten.

In the second half, it was Thailand who started on a strong note and were soon rewarded for their intent. Mueanta made the most of UAE’s inability to clear the lines and his volley didn’t give any chance to custodian Ali Khaseif. Star striker Ali Mabkhout was guilty of squandering a golden opportunity as he headed wide from an Ahbabi cross, which left the UAE supporters shell-shocked.

However, Jumaa scored the third goal late in the tie to clinch three crucial points for UAE with Mabkhout playing the role of provider.

What Caio said after the win over Thailand:

The Al Ain striker, who now has three goals to his name, was pleased with his performance and hopes that they can clinch the top spot in Group G. “I am so happy to help out the UAE tonight. I am so thankful to the fans for all the support they have given me and I am glad to repay them. Now we will go for that top spot in the group as that is our main goal.”

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