2018 FIFA World Cup qualification – AFC Third Round

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The third round of AFC matches for 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification was played from 1 September 2016 to 5 September 2017.[1]

Format[edit]

A total of 12 teams which advanced from the second round (the eight group winners and the four best group runners-up) were divided into two groups of six teams to play home-and-away round-robin matches. The top two teams of each group have qualified for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and the two third-placed teams advanced to the fourth round.

Qualified teams[edit]

Group
(2nd round)
Winners Runners-up (Best 4)
A  Saudi Arabia  United Arab Emirates
B  Australia
C  Qatar  China PR
D  Iran
E  Japan  Syria
F  Thailand  Iraq
G  South Korea
H  Uzbekistan

Seeding[edit]

The draw for the third round was held on 12 April 2016, at 16:30 MST (UTC+8), at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.[2][3]

The seeding were based on the FIFA World Rankings of April 2016 (shown in parentheses below).[4] The 12 teams were seeded into six pots:[5]

  • Pot 1 contained the teams ranked 1–2.
  • Pot 2 contained the teams ranked 3–4.
  • Pot 3 contained the teams ranked 5–6.
  • Pot 4 contained the teams ranked 7–8.
  • Pot 5 contained the teams ranked 9–10.
  • Pot 6 contained the teams ranked 11–12.

Each group contained one team from each of the six pots. The fixtures of each group were automatically decided based on the respective pot of each team.

Note: Bolded teams qualified for the World Cup. Italicised teams qualified for the fourth round.

Pot 1 Pot 2 Pot 3
  1.  Iran (42)
  2.  Australia (50)
  1.  South Korea (56)
  2.  Japan (57)
Pot 4 Pot 5 Pot 6
  1.  Qatar (83)
  2.  Iraq (105)
  1.  Syria (110)
  2.  Thailand (119)

Groups[edit]

Group A[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1  Iran 10 6 4 0 10 2 +8 22 Qualification to 2018 FIFA World Cup 1–0 2–2 2–0 1–0 2–0
2  South Korea 10 4 3 3 11 10 +1 15 0–0 1–0 2–1 3–2 3–2
3  Syria 10 3 4 3 9 8 +1 13 Advance to fourth round 0–0 0–0 1–0 2–2 3–1
4  Uzbekistan 10 4 1 5 6 7 −1 13 0–1 0–0 1–0 2–0 1–0
5  China PR 10 3 3 4 8 10 −2 12 0–0 1–0 0–1 1–0 0–0
6  Qatar 10 2 1 7 8 15 −7 7 0–1 3–2 1–0 0–1 1–2
Source: FIFA
Rules for classification: Qualification tiebreakers
Uzbekistan 1–0 Syria
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 29,100
Referee: Ryuji Sato (Japan)
Iran 2–0 Qatar
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

China PR 0–0 Iran
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Syria 0–0 South Korea
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Qatar 0–1 Uzbekistan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

South Korea 3–2 Qatar
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
China PR 0–1 Syria
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Uzbekistan 0–1 Iran
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 34,000

Uzbekistan 2–0 China PR
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Iran 1–0 South Korea
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 75,800
Referee: Ryuji Sato (Japan)
Qatar 1–0 Syria
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 9,940
Referee: Ahmed Al-Kaf (Oman)

South Korea 2–1 Uzbekistan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
China PR 0–0 Qatar
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Syria 0–0 Iran
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

China PR 1–0 South Korea
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 30,950
Qatar 0–1 Iran
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

South Korea 1–0 Syria
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Iran 1–0 China PR
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 78,115
Uzbekistan 1–0 Qatar
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Iran 2–0 Uzbekistan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 59,730
Referee: Ahmed Al-Kaf (Oman)
Syria 2–2 China PR
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Qatar 3–2 South Korea
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

China PR 1–0 Uzbekistan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
South Korea 0–0 Iran
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 63,124
Syria 3–1 Qatar
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Qatar 1–2 China PR
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Iran 2–2 Syria
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 62,165
Referee: Ryuji Sato (Japan)
Uzbekistan 0–0 South Korea
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 34,000

Group B[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1  Japan 10 6 2 2 17 7 +10 20 Qualification to 2018 FIFA World Cup 2–1 2–0 1–2 2–1 4–0
2  Saudi Arabia 10 6 1 3 17 10 +7 19 1–0 2–2 3–0 1–0 1–0
3  Australia 10 5 4 1 16 11 +5 19 Advance to fourth round 1–1 3–2 2–0 2–0 2–1
4  United Arab Emirates 10 4 1 5 10 13 −3 13 0–2 2–1 0–1 2–0 3–1
5  Iraq 10 3 2 5 11 12 −1 11 1–1 1–2 1–1 1–0 4–0
6  Thailand 10 0 2 8 6 24 −18 2 0–2 0–3 2–2 1–1 1–2
Source: FIFA
Rules for classification: Qualification tiebreakers
Australia 2–0 Iraq
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 18,923
Japan 1–2 United Arab Emirates
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Saudi Arabia 1–0 Thailand
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Iraq 1–2 Saudi Arabia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Thailand 0–2 Japan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 44,500
Referee: Mohsen Torky (Iran)
United Arab Emirates 0–1 Australia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Japan 2–1 Iraq
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
United Arab Emirates 3–1 Thailand
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Saudi Arabia 2–2 Australia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Australia 1–1 Japan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 48,460
Iraq 4–0 Thailand
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Saudi Arabia 3–0 United Arab Emirates
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Japan 2–1 Saudi Arabia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Thailand 2–2 Australia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 36,534
United Arab Emirates 2–0 Iraq
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Iraq 1–1 Australia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Thailand 0–3 Saudi Arabia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 41,613
United Arab Emirates 0–2 Japan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Australia 2–0 United Arab Emirates
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 27,328
Referee: Ahmed Al-Kaf (Oman)
Japan 4–0 Thailand
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Saudi Arabia 1–0 Iraq
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Australia 3–2 Saudi Arabia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 29,785
Thailand 1–1 United Arab Emirates
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Iraq 1–1 Japan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

United Arab Emirates 2–1 Saudi Arabia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Al-Abed Goal 20' (pen.)
Japan 2–0 Australia
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 59,492
Thailand 1–2 Iraq
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Attendance: 22,604

Australia 2–1 Thailand
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Iraq 1–0 United Arab Emirates
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)
Saudi Arabia 1–0 Japan
Report (FIFA)
Report (AFC)

Goalscorers[edit]

There were 129 goals scored in 60 matches, for an average of 2.15 goals per match.

5 goals
4 goals
3 goals
2 goals
1 goal
1 own goal

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Syria played their home matches outside Syria due to security concerns from the Syrian Civil War.
  2. ^ The kickoff of the Syria v Iran match was originally at 20:00 local time but was delayed by 45 minutes due to heavy rain.[7]
  3. ^ a b c d e Iraq played their home matches in Iran due to security concerns from the Iraqi Civil War. However, due to Saudi Arabia's refusal to play in Iran after the attack on their diplomatic missions in Iran, the first match was played in Malaysia.[8] Also, due to United Arab Emirates' refusal to play in Iran after the diplomatic crisis in Qatar, the final match was played in Jordan.
  4. ^ The Australia v Saudi Arabia match was brought forward from 13 June 2017 due to Australia's participation in the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "ExCo approves expanded AFC Asian Cup finals". AFC. 16 April 2014.
  2. ^ "2018 FIFA World Cup: Asian Qualifying Round 3 line up complete". Asian Football Confederation. 30 March 2016.
  3. ^ "Stage set for Russia 2018 Asian Qualifiers Final Round draw". Asian Football Confederation. 10 April 2016. Archived from the original on 12 April 2016.
  4. ^ "FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking – April 2016 (AFC)". FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 7 April 2016. Retrieved 7 April 2016.
  5. ^ "Iran remain No. 1 in Asia, Australia the big movers". the-afc.com. Asian Football Confederation. 7 April 2016. Retrieved 7 April 2016.
  6. ^ "Regulations – 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia" (PDF). FIFA.com.
  7. ^ "Iran hold by Syria in FIFA World Cup qualifier". Tehran Times. 15 November 2016.
  8. ^ "AFC deny Iraq's demand to play Saudi Arabia in Iran". Goal.com. 29 April 2016.
  9. ^ "Australia, Japan to go head-to-head following Asian draw". FIFA.com. 12 April 2016.
  10. ^ "Football: FIFA replaces Qatari referee for UAE World Cup qualifier; Singaporean steps in".

External links[edit]