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Iran, Syria tie in World Cup qualifier

07 September 2017

Iran took first with an impressive 22 points, winning six, drawing four and losing zero of their ten games.

Female foreigners are allowed to attend matches, and many noted the presence of Syrian women in the crowd at Azadi stadium on Tuesday night.

South Korea are second on 14 points, but Syria and Uzbekistan are both two points behind.

It brought an emotional apology from Kim as the team departed for Tashkent.

He returned to Damascus for the first time in five years to a hero's welcome last month, saying: "There is no better feeling than returning home".

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Syria play their home games 5,000 miles away from wartorn Damascus in Malaysia.

The hashtag "MbS is the face of luck" soon started gaining traction on social media, with many lauding the team's victory courtesy of half-time substitute Fahad Al Muwallad's winning goal.

Their squad consists of players plying their trade at clubs around the Middle East, with stars at regional powers such as Egypt's Zamalek as well as Qatari and Saudi clubs.

Al-Khatib, who played for Kuwaiti team Qadsia and later Al-Arabi, will be returning to his mother club of Al-Karamah in the central city of Homs. It should be noted that the national team of Uzbekistan has never won a victory over the SK. "This team is not Assad's team, it's Syria's team".

"It is to celebrate this win as the nation's accomplishment", one Saudi fan said on Twitter.

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"This team, we support it and we don't support it", said Ghaith al-Sayyed, a young resident of the town of Binnish in the northwestern province of Idlib.

The home side had already qualified for Russian Federation 2018 as group winners and hadn't conceded a World Cup qualifying goal for 18.5 hours.

The already-qualified Iranian football team had not conceded a single goal before this match but Syria ended their run of clean sheets.

A 91st minute Omar Khrbin penalty secured a 1-0 win against Uzbekistan while Ahmad Al Saleh's curling free kick three minutes into added time salvaged a point against Marcello Lippi's China as the Syrian bandwagon gained momentum.

With one foot in the abyss and facing elimination from Asian qualifying, Syrian players did the unthinkable.

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Iran, Syria tie in World Cup qualifier