UAE arrange South Korea friendly to prepare for 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign

As preparation for the start of the upcoming 2018 World Cup qualification campaign, the UAE are set to face South Korea in friendly on June 11, a week after the end of the domestic football season.

The UAE national team, pictured prior to the 2015 Asian Cup third/fourth place playoff against Iraq, will take on South Korea in June. Edgar Su / Reuters
Powered by automated translation

As preparation for the start of the upcoming 2018 World Cup qualification campaign, the UAE are set to face South Korea in friendly on June 11, a week after the end of the domestic football season.

Both teams have a bye on that date, which signals the start of the road to Russia 2018, and the UAE Football association have lined up the match against the AFC Asian Cup runners up ahead of their match away to Timor-Leste on June 16, although the venue has yet to be decided.

The friendly is part of a proposal by UAE coach Mahdi Ali which to the UAE Football Association which also includes his plans for international get-togethers for the upcoming 2015/16 season now that the schedule for the World Cup qualifiers had been finalised. The UAE are in Group A of the AFC region of the World Cup qualifiers and as well as Timor-Leste they will take on Saudi Arabia, Palestine and Malaysia.

UAE pride

Meanwhile, Salha Rashid, the captain of the UAE Under 14 girls side, said her teammates could take pride from finishing as runners-up at the AFC Under 14s Girls Regional Championship in Bahrain, which finished on Saturday.

Despite being unbeaten in their four games, of which three were wins, the UAE missed out on goal difference to Jordan after both sides had finished on 10 points.

“We attempted to win the competition this time around but goal difference was not on our side,” Rashid, a defender, said.

“But we played to a very high standard and we thank the big role that Women’s Football Committee (WFC) plays to provide all the resources for the national team to succeed in their overseas tournaments.”

Amal Bushlak, a member of the UAE FA, said she shared Rashid’s view that the girls could be satisfied with their week’s work.

“Especially in the match against last year’s silver medallists Palestine and the excellent draw against the reigning champions Jordan, who we had lost to last year which confirms the progress of this age group,” she said.”

RELATED:

COMMENT: UAE expected to live up to continent's powerhouse billing during 2018 World Cup qualifying

COMMENT: With extended contract comes 'responsibility' of guiding UAE to World Cup 2018 for Mahdi Ali

GALLERY: UAE striker Ali Mabkhout recognised by Guinness World Records for fastest Asian Cup goal