Oman has qualified to November’s FIFA Arab Cup after defeating Somalia 2-1 in their playoff match at Jassim bin Hamad Stadium in Doha on Sunday.
Muhsen Al-Ghassani and Salaah Al-Yahyaei scored first-half goals to confirm that Branko Ivankovic’s side will play in Group A along hosts Qatar, Iraq, and the winners of the playoff between Bahrain and Kuwait that will be played on Friday.
Oman stated the brighter of the two teams, and could have taken the lead at nine minutes when Al-Ghassani cleverly set up Abdulaziz Al-Maqbali, whose shot struck the crossbar.
It was a temporary reprieve for Somalia as Oman broke the deadlock only three minutes later when Al-Maqbali’s shot from the edge of the area was saved by the goalkeeper only for Al-Ghassani to force the ball home.
Oman doubled their advantage in the 35th minute when Mustaf Mohamed fouled Al-Ghassani inside the area and Salah Al-Yahyaei converted the resulting penalty.
The Somalis gave themselves a glimmer of hope when they pulled a goal back in the 54th minute, Mohamed Abdulahi’s cross into the area headed home by Abel Gigli past Oman goalkeeper Faiyz Al-Rusheidi.
Somalia pressed for an equalizer in the closing stages, but Oman held on to seal their place in the finals to be held between Nov. 27 and Dec. 18.