AFC Asian Cup 2019: How India's opponents UAE qualified for the finals

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India face hosts UAE on 10 January 2019 at Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi. Goal takes a look at how their qualifying campaign panned out...

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    2nd time Asian Cup hosts

    Italian manager Alberto Zaccheroni will lead the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after he was brought in last year to replace Argentine Edgardo Bauza. By virtue of being the host nation, the Whites directly qualified for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup. However, they had to play in the qualifiers and were placed in Group A of the 2nd round 2018 FIFA World Cup - 2019 AFC Asian Cup Joint Qualification along with Saudi Arabia, Palestine, Malaysia and Timor Leste.
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    Timor Leste 0-3 UAE

    16 June 2015 | Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia| Original result: Timor Leste 0-1 UAE (Omar Abdulrahman 80'). Timor Leste forfeited match after fielding numerous ineligible players.
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    UAE 10-0 Malaysia

    3 September 2015 | Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi | Ahmed Khalil scored four goals while Ali Mabkhout grabbed a hat-trick. Mohanad Salem, Habib Fardan and Mohamed Ahmed netted a goal each. 
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    Palestine 0-0 UAE

    8 September 2015 | Faisal Al-Husseini International Stadium, Al-Ram | It was the only goalless game of UAE's campaign.
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    Saudi Arabia 2-1 UAE

    8 October 2015 | King Abdullah Sports City, Jeddah | Ahmed Khalil opened the scoring early on for the visitors but Mohammad Al-Sahlawi's brace downed UAE to their only defeat.
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    UAE 8-0 Timor Leste

    12 November 2015 | Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi | Ahmed Khalil with four goals, Ali Mabkhout with two and one each from Dawood Ali and Ahmed Al-Hashmi demolished the minnows.
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    Malaysia 1-2 UAE

    17 November 2015 | Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam | Omar Abdulrahman and Ahmed Khalil were on the scoresheet as Badrol Bakhtiar got a consolation goal for the hosts.
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    UAE 2-0 Palestine

    24 March 2016 | Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi | Ahmed Khalil brought up his tenth goal of the campaign and Ismail Al-Hammadi his first.
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    UAE 1-1 Saudi Arabia

    29 March 2016 | Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi | Taisir Al-Jassim's early goal was cancelled out by Omar Abdulrahman as the hosts stole a point from their rivals in the last game of the round. Saudi Arabia went undefeated and won the group with 20 points, UAE finished second with 17 and gained entry to the 2019 Asian Cup and progressed into the next phase of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup.
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    No World Cup glory for UAE

    Drawn in Group B, UAE finished fourth with 13 points, six less than Australia in third, who qualified for the play-off. Japan and Saudi Arabia finished top two and went straight into the 2018 World Cup. Also in the group were Iraq and Thailand, the latter who were co-incidentally drawn in the same 2019 Asian Cup group as UAE.