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UAE hold Australia to draw

Olympic bid boosted in Adelaide.

The UAE's campaign for a berth in the 2012 London Olympics football tournament got off to a promising start when the Emiratis held group favourites Australia to a scoreless draw in Adelaide.

The so-called Golden Generation of UAE football seemed the more dangerous side in the match and had most of the best scoring chances, many of them off the foot of the Al Ahli stiker Ahmed Khalil, who was a steady threat to score.

Amer Abdulrahman, the Baniyas playmaker, dominated in midfield, and the goalkeeper Ahmed Mahmoud was rarely tested.

The winners of the four-team Group B, which includes Uzbekistan and Iraq, advance to the 2012 Summer Olympics. The second-placed sides from the three groups in Asian Football Confederation qualifying will have a play-off to determine the team eligible for a fourth berth.

The next qualifying match for Mahdi Ali's Under 23 side is home to Uzbekistan on November 23.

 

* Compiled by Paul Oberjuerge

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