Sports World: Qatar pull off shock win over Switzerland

Qatar pull off shock win over Switzerland

LUGANO • Qatar, hosts of the next football World Cup in 2022, pulled off one of the most impressive results in their history when they beat Switzerland 1-0 in an away friendly on Wednesday.

The 96th-ranked team snatched the win in the 86th minute through Akram Afif in a lacklustre match played in front of a paltry 4,000-strong crowd.

Qatar, who have never played at the World Cup, have now won four of their last five matches and Swiss coach Vladimir Petkovic admitted the visitors "deserved the win".


VAR to be used from Asian Cup q-final stage

KUALA LUMPUR • The Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system will be used from the quarter-finals of next year's Asian Cup, the Asian Football Confederation said yesterday.

The Asian Cup, which will be played in January in the United Arab Emirates, will see 24 teams taking part for the first time, up from the 16 that competed in the last four editions.


Spotlight on Zahavi after police raid Belgian club

BRUSSELS • Three people were arrested following a raid on Belgian top-flight club Mouscron on Wednesday, intensifying the spotlight on "super agent" Pini Zahavi amid reports of an illegally-held role.

While Zahavi, who took over the club in 2015, was not among those questioned by Belgian police, the Israeli is suspected of using "fraud, forgery and foreign companies" to obscure the extent of his role.

Thai businessman Pairoj Piempongsant bought Mouscron, who are suspected of filing "false documents", earlier this year, but Zahavi is reportedly still "a presence" at the club.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2018, with the headline 'Sports World'. Print Edition | Subscribe