Malaysia vs Oman
27/03/2024 01:44 AM

KUALA LUMPUR, March 26 (Bernama) -- Even home ground advantage of playing at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium was not enough to help Malaysia as they failed to beat Oman in tonight’s Group D 2026 World Cup/2027 Asian Cup second round qualifying match here.

The Harimau Malaya squad lost 0-2, a similar result in last week’s match against Oman in Muscat, and will likely make their road to the 2027 Asian Cup and qualifying for the third round of the 2026 World Cup even more difficult.

Right back Muhammad Azam Azmi Murad, midfielder Mohamed Syamer Kutty Abba and striker Darren Lok were part of Malaysia’s starting eleven tonight, as Pan Gon made three changes to the team that lost in Muscat, while Oman kept nearly the entire starting lineup, with the only change being striker Jameel Al Yahmadi.

Malaysia messed up a great chance of grabbing the lead in the very first minute when winger Arif Aiman Mohd Hanapi stole the ball from Oman captain Mohammed Al Musalami and rushed into the penalty box only to allow his shot to hit Oman goalkeeper Ibrahim Al Mukhaini’s foot.

Oman tried to reply in the ninth minute with a shot by Jameel Al Yahmadi that strayed to the left of goal, while Omer Al Malki’s on-target shot sailed right into Malaysian keeper Ahmad Syihan Hazmi Mohamed chest in the 18th minute.

Ahmad Syihan’s mistake of bringing down Muhsen Saleh Al Ghassani during the first half’s injury time gave Oman their first goal, with Omer calmly converting it to put the visitors 1-0 ahead, marring his previous heroics during the first half when he not only denied Oman from going ahead in the 35th minute by stopping Muhsen’s shot but also deflected Salaah Al Yahyaeitry’s attempt in the 42nd minute and Muhsen’s header two minutes later.

Oman continued to pile on the pressure in the second half, coming close in the 52nd minute with a long range shot from Salaah that just missed the top bar of the goal, after which things got tense as the Malaysians started working in earnest to eke out an equaliser.

The last 30 minutes of the match saw two more missed attempts by Oman and the match seemed to be headed for a 0-1 result when a momentary lapse in concentration by the Harimau Malaya defence allowed an unmarked Mohammed Mubarak Al-Ghafri to receive a pass from Abdullah Fawas and score Oman’s second goal in the dying minutes of injury time.

Malaysia’s loss means they remain third in Group D with six points while Kyrgyzstan lead the group with nine point after beating Taiwan 5-1 tonight, followed by second-placed Oman, also with nine points, while Taiwan is last without a single point.

The national team will play Kyrgyzstan in Bishkek next on June 6 before ending their Group D fixtures against Taiwan at Bukit Jalil on June 11.