Thailand has reached the knockout round of the AFC Asia Cup after playing out a 1-1 draw against the UAE at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium.
Things did not start off well for Thailand as the UAE took an early lead in the 7th minute. Ali Mabkhout headed home after Ismail Al-Hammadi’s dinked effort came off the bar following some slack defending from the Thai players. Thailand rallied back and equalised in the 42nd minute after midfielder Thitipan Puangchan bundled the ball in the back of the net following the keeper saving his backheel attempt.
The result means Thailand qualifies to the knockout round for the first time in nearly 50 years following their second place finish in group A, with UAE topping the group and Bahrain qualifying in 3rd after their 1-o win over India. The Thai’s qualification chances were given a massive boost after their 1-0 win over Bahrain the previous week after the disastrous first game thrashing they received at the hands of India.