Elimination stares Libya in the face in a disappointing tournament at the Arab Games Doha 2011 following a 1-1 draw against Palestine, 1-4 losers against Jordan in their first outing. Libya, who had lost 0-1 to Sudan in their first outing, face Jordan in their final Group C match on Saturday.
Jordan and Sudan figured in a scoreless draw in their direct clash on Wednesday and both now stand on four points, which could be enough for both of them to qualify at the expense of Libya and Palestine who have only a point to show for their toils.
As it turns out therefore, they both need to win their final match on Saturday, and do so with enough goals to give them a superior goal difference than the top two.
Libya's task looks even tougher. In the two games played this far, their next opponents, Jordan have proved to be the strongest in the group. A point from a draw would give them qualification and eliminate Libya. Even if they lose, their goal difference of 4 against 1 could be enough for them to qualify in a narrow defeat.
Against Palestine, the weakest team in the group, on Wednesday Libya again failed to raise their game, that does not augur well for their participation in next month's Africa Cup of Nations finals at Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.
In a lustreless performance at the Al-Gharafa Stadium, in the Qatari capital, Doha, Libya took the lead after 41 minutes with a goal by Ihab Albusaifi, but they failed to press on their advantage and allowed Palestine back in the match two minutes from time when they levelled the score through Imaad Zaatara.
In the other group C match Jordan and Sudan played a well balanced encounter and ended up sharing the spoils in a goalless draw that keeps them in line to qualify to the quarter finals.
In Group A, following their 2-2 draw with hosts Qatar, Bahrain defeated Iraq 3-0 to eliminate their opponents with goals by Hardan in the first half, and a brace by Abdul Latif, one from a penalty, on the change-over.
The last remaining match in this group takes place Friday when Qatar meet Iraq. If Qatar fail to beat Iraq, or win by less than three goals, they too would be eliminated, leaving Bahrain to proceed to the semi-finals.
In group B, following the withdrawal of Somalia, who had already been defeated by Kuwait (and therefore the points were erased), Kuwait earned a 2-0 success over Oman with two goals by Nasser, Kuwait stand a good chance of qualifying to the last four stage They currently stand top of the group with three points while the Saudis have only got two. As such, Kuwait need only draw against Saudi Arabia on Saturday to go through.
Results so Far
Qatar v Bahrain 2-2
Bahrain v Iraq 3-0
Qatar v Iraq (Fri)
Saudi Arabia v Oman 0-0
Saudi Arabia v Kuwait (Sat)
Libya v Sudan 0-1
Jordan v Palestine 4-1
Sudan v Jordan 0-0
Libya v Palestine
Sudan v Palestine (Sat)
Libya v Jordan (Sat)