The Omani team was on its way to achieving its first victory in its first participation in the competition, after advancing with a goal by Salah Al Yahyai from a penalty kick in the 78th minute.
But Iraq, which played with ten players since the 68th minute to send off its midfielder Yasser Qassem, equalized in the eighth minute of stoppage time through Hassan Abdul Karim and a penalty kick that was re-executed after resorting to the video assistant referee (VAR) technique after he overtook the Omani goalkeeper Ahmed Al-Rawahi goal line to tackle Ayman Hussein’s kick.
Host Qatar will meet Bahrain later in the first round of the group.
Iraq was the best spread and most dangerous, especially in the first half in its first match under the leadership of its new coach, Jeliko Petrovic, the successor of Dutchman Dick Advocaat, who resigned from his technical duties due to the poor results, but he failed to translate the many opportunities that came before him into goals.
The “Lions of Al-Rafidain” paid dearly in the second half, after the improvement of the performance of the Omanis, who took advantage of the numerical shortage in Iraq, as well as the mistake of defender Hassan Raed against Amjad Al-Harthy inside the region to obtain a penalty kick for which Al-Yahiai succeeded, but Al-Harthy, in turn, committed a mistake on Ayman Hussein. Inside the area to cause a penalty kick from which Iraq equalized.
In the second round, Iraq will play with Bahrain, and Oman with Qatar.
Iraq started the match with pressure, and got its first dangerous chance in the eighth minute, with a direct free kick carried out by Al-Shurta player Mohammed Qassem with his left foot, passing along the left post of Omani goalkeeper Ahmed Al-Rawahi.
The Omani team responded through a beautiful scissor from Munther Al-Alawi at the edge of the penalty area, which was easily picked up by Iraqi goalkeeper Fahd Talib (17), who followed it a minute later, Juma Al-Habsi, with a sudden powerful shot from outside the penalty area to the right post.
The pace of the match increased, and in the most prominent opportunity for the Iraqi team, Muhammad Qassem, the most dangerous player in the first half, hit a powerful ball with his left from a long distance. The goalkeeper of Al-Seeb Al-Rawahi Club rose to it without being able to intercept it to be blocked by the crossbar (21).
The “Lions of Mesopotamia” team continued its pressure, relying on the weapon of long shots, and the player Ahmed Farhan had his share with a powerful shot from the left hallway from 28 meters, which was blocked by Al-Rawahi goalkeeper with the palm of his hand, hitting the crossbar and leaving a corner (32).
Iraq missed a new opportunity after a cross pass from the left side inside the area, followed by Alaa Abbas “on the fly” with his left foot, which passed next to the post (39).
The performance of the Omani team improved in the second half, but without danger.
Iraq suffered a painful blow in the middle of the second half by sending off its midfielder, Yasser Qassem, for receiving a second warning (68).
The Omani team won a penalty kick after Al-Harthy was obstructed by Hassan Raed. Al Yahyai was blocked by Al-Harithi to the left of the goalkeeper (78).
At the time when the match was breathing its last, Iraq got a penalty after Al-Harthy pulled Ayman Hussein’s shirt, so he missed it at first sight, but wasted it (90 + 6) before the referee asked to return it because the Omani goalkeeper Al-Rawahi moved his feet off the goal line, and received it Abdul Karim this time and hit it to the right of the goalkeeper (90 + 8).