Lebanon played on Sunday their last friendly game before the beginning of the decisive round in the FIFA World Cup 2014 Asian Qualifications, that kicks off next Sunday 3/6/2012 when the Lebanese side hosts the Qatari team on Sports City stadium in front of 52000 Lebanese fans thirsty for the win.
So Far, the Lebanese National Team played 3 friendly games during this month and yet didn’t manage to win any.
- Lebanon vs Egypt – Friday 11/5/2012 – Final score 1-4.
- Lebanon vs Jordan – Friday 18/5/2012 – Final Score 1-2.
And Finally today’s game against Oman in Muscat who themselves are preparing to continue their campaign in the Qualifications in the GROUP B along with Japan, Australia, Iraq & Jordan.
While Lebanon came in GROUP A along with Iran, Korea Republic, Uzbekistan & Qatar.
Lebanon played the game without 5 of its players,
- Youssef Mohammad “Defender” – Playing with Al Ahli in Etisalat Pro-League
- Abbas Atwi “Midfielder” – Playing with Dubai in Etisalat Pro-League
- Hassan Maatouk “Forward” – Playing with Ajman in Etisalat Pro-League
- Rida Antar “Midfielder – Injury
- Mahmoud El Ali “Forward” – Injury
With those injuries, Lebanon was able to benefit from the comeback of several key players that participated in the game today
- Mohammad Ghaddar “Forward”
- Ramez Dioub “Defender”
- Zakaria Charara “Midfielder”
The game started with a total domination from the visitors side on the game and control on the pitch using short passes technique and sidelines attacks by Ahmad Zreik from the right and Zakaria Charara from the Left.
Until the 25th minute, when Charara managed to cross the ball to the head of Mohammad Ghaddar who scored with a marvelous header in the right lower corner of Ali El Habsi goal, which ended the first half with Lebanon leading 1-0.
After that Coach Bucker decided to substitute Zakaria Charara who suffered in the beginning of the game from a minor injury.
In the beginning of the second half, Paul Le Guen the French, Omani coach made a tactical substitution by placing a forward instead of a midfielder which gave result, when the Walid Al Saadi scored the equalizer in the 53rd minute for Oman.
After that both teams made several substitutions to test all the available players before their opening games.
The game ended 1-1.
Both teams benefited, but all in all few words can be said about the Lebanese performance in the game.
- Coach Theo Bucker was able to test all the needed players such as Zein Tahan and Mohammad Haidar in addition to Zakaria Charara and Mohammad Ghaddar and Ramez Dioub who played really well.
- With all the absences on the Lebanese Squad, the available players played really well
- Despite the absence of Rida Antar who’s almost irreplaceable, but Haitham Faour played really well in his position.
- With Zakaria Charara on the Left Side, Lebanon was able to make a real danger, despite the absence of Hassan Maatouk
- Abbas Atwi would have given an extra attacking pressure, especially that he already played with Zakaria and Ghaddar.
- Coach Theo Bucker succeeded in making the final formation that will play against Qatar next week a secret. As he have different options.
- Hussein Dkik yet is not able to play as a CB, and when he moved to his original position as LB after the injury of Walid Ismail he showed some good skills.
- The versatility of Mahmoud El Ali inside the Penalty area is still missed despite the presence of Hassan Mohammad and Mohammad Haidar who can’t replace him.
A Final word to be said about the Lebanese National team.
He might not Be the best team available in the Final Round of the WC Qualifications but yet the Team Spirit and the support of the Lebanese fans can give the team a positive push in order to make every Lebanese dream come true or at least make every Lebanese person proud of having such team, as the main purpose is coming on top of the Group nor qualifying to the WC, instead building a good team who can become a highly competitive team in Asia.
Good Luck Lebanon