News ID: 236947
Published: 0337 GMT January 06, 2019

Holder Australia falls to shock Jordan loss in Asian Cup

Holder Australia falls to shock Jordan loss in Asian Cup
Jordan’s Anas Bani Yaseen (C) celebrates his team’s goal during a 1-0 victory over Australia in the AFC Asian Cup in Al Ain, the UAE, on January 6, 2019.

Australia made the worst possible start to the defense of its AFC Asian Cup crown on Sunday as Graham Arnold’s Socceroos were handed a 1-0 defeat by unfancied Jordan.

The Australians, who won the title on home soil four years ago, dominated for long spells but were unable to find a way to cancel out Anas Bani Yaseen’s 26th minute header in the Group B clash at Hazza bin Zayed Stadium, Reuters reported.

Vital Borkelmans’ Jordan was resolute in defense against an Australia side that struggled to turn its domination into chances. The Socceroos went into halftime trailing by a goal and were fortunate not to be further behind.

Bani Yaseen put his side in front when he was given the time and space to head Baha Abdel Rahman’s corner home unchallenged, powering the ball beyond the flat-footed Maty Ryan.

Four minutes later Abdel Rahman almost added a second when his free-kick from the edge of the area speared toward goal, only for Ryan to push the ball onto the woodwork before it was cleared.

For all its possession in the opposition half, Australia crafted few clear-cut opportunities, with Awer Mabil’s shot coming back of goalkeeper Amer Shafi’s legs and Jamie MacLaren heading high over the bar.

Mabil hit the woodwork late in the second half as Australia grew increasingly desperate to find an equalizer and Shafi was kept busy until the final kick of the game but Jordan held on for a famous win.

Australia next faces Palestine on January 11 while Jordan will take on Syria.


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