UAE squad nearly unchanged for World Cup qualifiers against Saudi Arabia and Iraq

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UAE coach Edgardo Bauza chooses not to experiment with youth in World Cup qualifiers despite campaign all but lost.

UAE head coach Edgardo Bauza has named 30 players in his squad for the team's final two 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

The list of players was announced by the UAE Football Association (UAEFA) on Monday and is almost identical to the one that faced Thailand in Bauza's first game in June.

However, there are a couple of new inclusions with Al Wahda defender Ahmed Rashid and Bani Yas winger Suhail Al Noubi coming into the fold.

Saudi Arabia travel to the UAE with the encounter to take place at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain on August 29. Bauza's men will then travel to Jordan to play Iraq in their final World Cup qualifier at the Amman international Stadium on September 5.


UAE are currently fourth in Group B, six points outside the qualifying spots. Barring a miracle, The Whites will not progress in their quest for a 2018 World Cup berth following the aforementioned fixtures.

Ismail Matar UAE

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Meanwhile, seven Al Ain players, including AFC Player of the Year Omar Abdulrahman, have been excused from international duty as they prepare for their AFC Champions League quarter-final first leg against Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia on August 21. They will instead link up with the rest of the camp in Al Ain on August 22 at the Tahnoun bin Mohamed Stadium.

UAE squad:

Khalid Essa, Mohammed Ahmed, Ismail Ahmed, Mohaned Salem, Ahmed Barman, Omar Abdulrahman, Mohamed Abdulrahman (Al Ain); Suhail Al Noubi (Bani Yas); Ali Khaseif, Mohammed Fawzi, Fares Juma, Ahmed Khalil, Ali Mabkhout (Al Jazira); Ahmed Shambieh, Mahmoud Khamis, Tariq Ahmed, Salem Saleh (Al Nasr); Majed Nasser, Abdulaziz Haikal, Mohammed Marzouq, Walid Abbas, Abdulaziz Sanqour, Khamis Esmail, Hassan Ibrahim, Habib Fardan (Shabab Al Ahli Dubai Club); Ahmed Rashid, Tariq Ahmed, Khaled Bawazir, Mohamed Al Akbari, Ismail Matar (Al Wahda)

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