Defensive blunders and lack of concentration contribute to a crushing loss for the Lions as they end an already disappointing qualifying campaign on a miserable note.Any hopes of Singapore ending the World Cup 2014 qualifying round on a high was ended with a convincing 7-1 rout by Iraq in Qatar on Wednesday.
Singapore came into the game off the back of a morale-boosting 2-2 draw against Azerbaijan and fans were expecting a performance from the Lions, but they were roundly beaten on the night.
The first goal of the match was scored by Kerrar Jasim, who capitalized on a mistake by Shahril Ishak to drill home a first-time shot under goalkeeper Hassan Sunny.
The second goal soon followed, with Younis Mahmood racing down the right flank and cutting past his marker to slot home from close range to double the lead.
The Iraqi attack was running the Singapore defense ragged and when Hassan Sunny felled Hawar Mohd in the box, he converted the penalty to extend the lead for the Iraqis.
The Lions managed to pull a goal back on 25 minutes when Isa Halim drilled a low shot after being setup by Shahril Ishak but it was soon 4-1 after another penalty incident. Nashat Akram was brought down by Daniel Bennett and he stepped up to convert it himself.
By now it was all Iraq attack against Singapore defense and only brilliant keeping by Sunny and poor finishing by the Iraqis were keeping the scoreline respectable. The halftime whistle was certainly a welcome respite for the Singapore team.
Almost immediately after the break it was 5-1. Sloppy defending allowed Mustafa Karim to find space in the box and find the net despite being surrounded by Singapore defenders.
Singapore's best chance in the second half came when Qiu Li found Ruzaini Zainal unmarked at the far post with plenty of space, but his first touch was poor and the defender ended up clearing the ball.
Mahmood scored his second goal on the hour mark when he was again given all the time in the world to turn and find the net. With the match a foregone conclusion, the forward then completed a personal milestone in the 90th minute, finding space to run through and chip Hassan Sunny to complete his hat trick.
Singapore has now completed its World Cup Qualifying campaign with six straight defeats and just two goals scored, while Iraq progresses to the next round together with Jordan.
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