Tehran: New Jordan coach Hossam Hassan saw his side fight back to secure a 1-1 draw against Syria as the nations shared the points in their AFC Asian Cup Group A qualifying encounter on Thursday evening.
Substitute Burhan Sahyouni gave the Syrians the lead just two minutes after the restart but Mus’ad Allahham levelled with a header in the 57th minute to ensure the Jordanians maintained their unbeaten start to the campaign for a place in the finals in Australia in 2015.
Jordan sit in second place in Group A, two points behind Oman who secured a 2-0 win over Singapore on Wednesday evening. The point was Syria’s first from their opening two games, moving them ahead of the last-placed Singaporeans.
“I believe my side had more chances to win the game,” said Hassan. “I have to confess they were better in the middle of the field, but opportunity-wise we created many more chances.
“My players were very motivated and that was good for us. I need more time to work with Jordan, since I have joined them for two months only.
“Jordan have been losing and not getting good results outside home, but today’s result was an end to that run as we have now started getting good results away from home.”
Ahmad Hayel went close to giving the Jordanians the lead just eight minutes into the game when he saw his effort go just over the crossbar while the Syrians had their first effort of the night eight minutes later as Sanharib Malki’s header flew just to high of the target.
But while the teams went in level at halftime, it took just two minutes after the restart for Syria to take the lead as Sahyouni - a replacement during the interval for Ahmad Kallasi - struck with a low right-footed effort. Just 10 minutes later, however, Hassan’s side were back on level terms when Allahham scored with a fine header to earn Jordan a point.
“The players’ movement on the pitch in very important and I think that’s the main reason we couldn’t keep our 1-0 lead and conceded the goal in just 10 minutes,” said Syria coach Anas Makhlouf.
Ko Yo-han struck five minutes into stoppage time to seal a 3-2 win for FC Seoul over Daejon Citizen after Choi Yong-soo’s side threw away a two-goal lead in K-League Classic action on Thursday evening.
Ko’s late goal ensured the defending Korean champions maintained their fine run of form as FC Seoul notched up a seventh win in eight league matches ahead of their AFC Champions League quarter-final meeting with Al Ahli. Choi’s team travel to Saudi Arabia for the first leg in Jeddah next Wednesday and they will do so in boisterous mood having climbed up to third in the domestic standings thanks to the win over Daejon.
Mauricio Molina gave FC Seoul the lead in the 29th minute and when Ko Myong-jin doubled his side’s lead in the 68th minute it seemed as if all three points were destined for Seoul.
But goals from Lee Gang-jin in the 72nd minute and an equaliser from Ji Kyung-deuk three minutes from time appeared to have earned Daejon a share of the spoils until Ko’s last-gasp effort.
Farhad Majidi struck in the 69th minute to earn Esteghlal a 2-1 win over Damash Gilan on Thursday evening as the two-time Asian champions continued to build up to their AFC Champions League quarter-final clash with Thailand’s Buriram United.
The two sides go head-to-head in the first leg in Tehran next Wednesday and Amir Ghalenoei’s side are currently at the summit of the Iranian league, two points ahead of Foolad but having played one game more.
Damash Gilan took the lead in the 17th minute through Amir Motevaselzadeh but just eight minutes later the scores were level again thanks to an effort by Siavash Akbarpour.