KATHMANDU, March 28: Nepal lost 1-2 to Yemen in its last match of AFC Asian Cup 2019 Qualification match at the Suheim Bin Hamad Stadium, (Qatar Sports Complex), Doha on Tuesday.
Along with group winners Philippines, Yemen have already qualified to the first ever AFC Asian Cup on head to head basis after Philippines defeated Tajikistan 2-1 earlier today.
Nepal, Tajikistan, Philippines and Yemen were in group F of AFC Asian Cup 2019 Qualification.
Philippines atopped the group with twelve ponts. Yemen finished runners-up with twelve points. Tajikistan collected seven points. Nepal, already out of the Qualification, remained in the last of the standing with two points.
Yemen came out of the blocks racing and was denied a certain scoring opportunity eight minutes into the match after a last-ditch tackle from Bishal Rai blocked Ayman Al Hajeri’s attempted finish inside the Nepali penalty box.
Abdulwasea Al Matari fired Yemen in front in the 24th minute, receiving Ala Al Sasi’s pass and cutting inside from the right flank before unleashing a thunderous drive from 30 yards out to beat the Nepalese goalkeeper Kiran Chemjong.
As the first half drew to a close, the visitors found the equalizer through Nawayug Shrestha who headed Rai’s free kick into the bottom corner of the Yemeni net in added time to send the two sides into the break level.
Al Sasi was left to rue his luck in the 69th minute after he pounced on a poor defensive clearance and went for the spectacular, firing on the half volley from outside the penalty box.
The Yemeni playmaker beat Chemjong but watched his strike rattle the crossbar and go behind for a goal kick.
Substitute Mohsen Hassan was brought down inside the box by Nepal captain Biraj Maharjan, prompting the referee to award a penalty and Al Matari stepped up to convert emphatically from the spot for his second of the night seven minutes from time.