The UAE's margin for error in qualifying for the 2012 London Olympics got a bit wider when Iraq defeated Uzbekistan 2-1 thanks to an 88th-minute goal in Qatar.
Iraq come out on top in Doha against Uzbekistan
DOHA // The UAE's margin for error in qualifying for the 2012 London Olympics got a bit wider when Iraq defeated Uzbekistan 2-1 thanks to an 88th-minute goal in Qatar.
Uzbekistan remain on eight points at the top of Group B, along with the UAE, who play Australia tonight.
Uzbekistan can still win the group and gain a place at the Summer Games by defeating the UAE in Tashkent on March 14 in the final round of group play.
However, if the UAE can defeat or draw with Australia, a draw in Uzbekistan would be enough for the Emiratis to win the group.
The score in Doha also was good news for Australia, who have hopes of finishing second in the group and entering a three-team Asian group runners-up tournament in Vietnam next month for the right to play Senegal with the final London berth at stake.
If the Australians defeat the UAE tonight and Iraq on March 22, they would have nine points, which would be enough to finish ahead of an Uzbekistan-UAE loser.
The Uzbeks seized a one-goal lead in the 23rd minute when the midfielder Fozil Musaev scored after a flurry of shots at the Iraq goalkeeper Jalal Hassan.
Iraq equalised just before the break through a penalty. Uzbekistan's Amanov Bobirjon fouled Waleed Salim Al Lami in the box, and Mohammed Saad scored from the spot.
Two minutes from time, a chip by Mustafa Ahmed caught the Uzbek goalkeeper off his line. The defender Islom Tuhtahujaev was in perfect position to head the ball away, but he could only deflect it into his own net.
The victory took Iraq to four points in the group.