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Abdelkarim slams historic hat-trick to spur Qatar


Qatar’s Abdelkarim Hassan entered the history books of Qatar football when he slammed a hat-trick for the hosts, becoming the first from his country in Gulf Cup, against Yemen as Qatar won 6-0 to pocket three points in the 24th Arabian Gulf Cup.

Acknowledged by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) as the continent’s best player last year, Abdelkarim was in scintillating form as he powered Qatar to a huge victory with the country’s first hat-trick at the Gulf Cup in the Group A match on Friday.

With the victory, Qatar have ensured a strong comeback after their shock 2-1 loss against Iraq in the opening match.

The win at the Khalifa International Stadium late on Friday has brought the Asian champions back into the reckoning in the Gulf Cup. Qatar will play their next game against UAE which will decide the semifinal spot for one of the teams.

Abdelkarim’s goals (29th, 37th, 71st) and strikes from Al Moez Ali (57th), Abdullah AbdulSalam (85th) and Akram Afif (90th) sealed the deal for Qatar. The one-sided match ensured the attacking strength of the Qatar team.

The Spanish coach Felix Sanchez, head coach of Qatar team, expressed his satisfaction on the team’s performance and the players’ excellent efforts during the game. “The team in overall was perfect. All the players delivered a great performance in the game. The early goal and continued scoring attempts allowed the team to dominate the match and score more,” Sanchez said.

Commenting on the opening fixture against Iraq, Sanchez responded: ”The opening game in any tournament is always a difficult match. As a coach I have to respect all the teams and treat them in equal.’’

During the match, Qatar’s Abdul Aziz Hatim suffered an injury. “I do not have an exact idea on the extent of the injury. We should wait until the medical report.” Sanchez commented.

On another query for the next match against the UAE and the difference of this match and the previous one in Asian Cup Championship, the Spanish coach said: ”This is a different competition. We have to focus on good preparation for the next match. It will decide who will move to the next level,” coach Sanchez concluded.

On the other hand, Yemen coach Sami al Na’ash expressed his great disappointment at being completely outplayed.

“Qatar’s players (were playing) as a group together since many years. This is the result of the professional work.

We tried our best and showed better show but the opponent was too strong,” he said.

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