United Arab Emirates national football team
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|Nickname(s)||Al Abyad (The Whites)|
Eyal Zayed (Sons of Zayed)
|Association||UAE Football Association|
|Sub-confederation||WAFF (West Asia)|
|Head coach||Alberto Zaccheroni|
|Most caps||Adnan Al Talyani (161)|
|Top scorer||Adnan Al Talyani (52)|
|Current||79 (20 December 2018)|
|Highest||40 (November – December 1998)|
|Lowest||138 (January 2012)|
|Current||90 19 (18 January 2019)|
|Highest||24 (15 January 2015)|
|Lowest||140 (September 1981)|
| United Arab Emirates 1–0 Qatar |
(Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 17 March 1972)
| Brunei 0–12 United Arab Emirates |
(B. S. Begawan, Brunei; 14 April 2001)
| United Arab Emirates 0–8 Brazil |
(Abu Dhabi, UAE; 12 November 2005)
|Appearances||1 (first in 1990)|
|Best result||Group stage, 1990|
|Appearances||10 (first in 1980)|
|Best result||Runners-up, 1996|
|Appearances||1 (first in 1997)|
|Best result||Group Stage, 1997|
The United Arab Emirates national football team (Arabic: منتخب الإمارات العربية المتحدة لكرة القدم) represents the United Arab Emirates in association football and is controlled by the United Arab Emirates Football Association, the governing body for football in United Arab Emirates and competes in AFC. They were for a time managed by legendary English manager Don Revie.
United Arab Emirates' home ground varies. Most home games have been played at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi with Abu Dhabi's Al Jazira Stadium and Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain as other venues.
It has made one World Cup appearance, in 1990 in Italy, but lost all three of its games to Colombia, West Germany and Yugoslavia. Two years later, the United Arab Emirates took fourth place in the 1992 Asian Cup, and runner-up in 1996 as hosts of the tournament. In both tournaments, their final match was lost on penalty kicks. They also won the Arabian Gulf Cup on two occasions; in 2007 when they won the title for the first time in their history, and the second time was in 2013. They finished third in the 2015 AFC Asian Cup and will be hosting the next AFC Asian Cup in 2019.
- 1 History
- 2 Rivalries
- 3 Nicknames
- 4 Home stadium
- 5 Historical kits
- 6 Coaching staff
- 7 Players
- 8 Recent and forthcoming fixtures
- 9 Tournament records
- 10 Head to head against other countries
- 11 Records
- 12 Honors
- 13 See also
- 14 References
- 15 External links
The first match of the United Arab Emirates national football team was played on 17 March 1972, four months after the union of the United Arab Emirates. They played against Qatar at Riyadh's Prince Faisal bin Fahd Stadium and UAE won 1–0 with the only goal scored by Ahmed Chowbi. Then, the team faced three other Arabian countries, losing 4–0 and 7–0 to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait respectively and beating Bahrain 3 to nothing.
First Asian Cup appearances
In 1980, the United Arab Emirates qualified for the first time for the AFC Asian Cup, which was held in Kuwait. They were drawn with eventual winners, Kuwait, runner-up South Korea, Malaysia and Qatar in Group B. They drew 1–1 with Kuwait but lost the three other matches and finished their first appearance at the tournament in fifth place in their group and ninth (out of ten teams) overall.
They also qualified for next two tournaments, 1984 in Singapore and 1988 in Qatar and were again eliminated in the group stages in both. Their first victory of the tournament occurred against India on 7 December 1984 under manager Heshmat Mohajerani.
1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy
In 1984, Mohajerani resigned as UAE head coach and was replaced with former Brazil manager Carlos Alberto Parreira. Parreira led the country at the 1988 AFC Asian Cup and left his position after the tournament. He was succeeded by Brazilian World Cup winning coach Mário Zagallo. Zagallo led the country to the qualification for the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy. However, Zagallo resigned before the tournament and Parreira returned as head coach to lead the United Arab Emirates at the tournament.
They were drawn at Group D along with eventual winner West Germany, Colombia and Yugoslavia. They lost 2–0 to Colombia, 5–1 to West Germany and 4–1 to Yugoslavia. They finished fourth with no points, scoring two goals and conceding eleven goals. UAE's first goal at the tournament was scored by Khalid Ismaïl against West Germany. After the tournament, Parreira was sacked. Two years later, at the 1992 AFC Asian Cup, the United Arab Emirates finished in fourth place, their best finish up to that date.
1996 AFC Asian Cup
The United Arab Emirates hosted the 1996 AFC Asian Cup. They hired Croatian coach Tomislav Ivić one year before the tournament and were drawn in Group A along with Kuwait, South Korea and Indonesia. They drew 1–1 with South Korea in the opening match, then defeated Kuwait 3–2 and Indonesia 2–0 to qualify as group winners with seven points. In the quarter-finals, they beat Iraq 1–0 with a golden goal scored by Abdulrahman Ibrahim in the 103rd minute in extra time. They again faced Kuwait, this time at the semi-finals and won 1–0 to qualify to the final for the first time. In the final, and after a goalless draw, they lost to Saudi Arabia 2–4 in a penalty shoot-out and finished the tournament as runner-up, which is still their best finish in the AFC Asian Cup.
The tournament was also considered to be one of the best tournaments held since 1956. The tournament had an average 3.08 goals per game with 80 goals scored, 49 goals higher than the previous edition.
The United Arab Emirates also appeared in the 1997 FIFA Confederations Cup after being awarded a spot because Asian winners Saudi Arabia was hosting the games. They lost the first match 2–0 to Uruguay. Then, they defeated South Africa 1–0. In their final match, they were defeated 6–1 by Czech Republic and missed their chance to qualify for the next round finishing third in their group.
Despite their good performances at the previous Asian Cup, the United Arab Emirates missed the qualification for the 2000 AFC Asian Cup in Lebanon. They also finished in last place at the 2002 Gulf Cup in Saudi Arabia.
They were eliminated in the next three AFC Asian Cup tournaments at the group stage. Their worst performance was in 2011 when they finished the tournament goalless. At this time, many notable coaches managed the United Arab Emirates, including Carlos Queiroz, Roy Hodgson and Dick Advocaat. In 2006, the UAE appointed Senegal's 2002 FIFA World Cup head coach, Bruno Metsu as their new manager. He led the United Arab Emirates to the 2007 Gulf Cup title, the country's first major achievement.
After hiring many notable European coaches, in 2012, the United Arab Emirates appointed the Olympic team coach Mahdi Ali as the new manager of the national team. Ali previously led the country to their first ever appearance at the Olympic Games.
2015 AFC Asian Cup
The United Arab Emirates's form at the 2015 AFC Asian Cup was a surprise to many. They were drawn in Group C along with Iran, Qatar and Bahrain. They defeated Qatar 4–1 in their first match. At the next match, they defeated Bahrain 2–1 which qualified them for the knockout stage. In the group's final game, the United Arab Emirates lost 1–0 to Iran, in which Iran scored a controversial goal that appeared to be offside. However, the gulf team advanced as group runner-up. They faced the defending champions Japan in the quarter-final and earned a shock victory on penalties to advance to the last four. However, they lost 2–0 to the host country Australia in the semi-finals. In the third place play-off, they beat Iraq 3–2 and finished the tournament in the third place. The United Arab Emirates will be hosting the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.
2018 FIFA World Cup Qualification
The United Arab Emirates qualified for the Second Round of the AFC qualification, where they finished second in Group A behind Saudi Arabia and qualified for the Third Round. In this round, they finished fourth in Group B, thus failing to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Despite this, one of United Arab Emirates players Ahmed Khalil manage to be the top scorer in the qualification along with two other players.
2019 AFC Asian Cup
In 2015, It was announced that the United Arab Emirates will host the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, this marks the 2nd time United Arab Emirates hosts an AFC Asian Cup, first was in 1996 AFC Asian Cup were UAE finished in second place after losing Saudi Arabia on penalties.
The rivalry between Qatar and UAE was mostly friendly, however due to Qatar diplomatic crisis the captain of UAE under 19 years youth team refused to shake hands with Qatar's youth captain in AFC U19. As of 2018 Qatar and UAE have played 29 official matches, most of which was held competitively in the Arabian Gulf Cup, it started off with the United Arab Emirates beating Qatar 1–0. They only played 2 friendly games and the last friendly was held in 2011 which ended with an Emirati victory.
The United Arab Emirates is known by supporters and the media as Al-Abyad, meaning The Whites which reference to their white jersey and also Eyal Zayed which means Zayed's sons.
In October 2012, the Asian Football Confederation official website published an article about the UAE national team's campaign to qualify for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, in which the team was referred to as the "Sand Monkeys." This was the indirect result of vandalism of the Wikipedia article on the team, and the AFC was forced to apologise for what was perceived as a racist slur.
Prior 2019 Home
Prior 2019 Away
1992 Asian Cup Home
1994 Asian Games Home
1994 Asian Games Away
|Head coach||Alberto Zaccheroni|
|Technical director||Obaid Al Shamsi|
|Assistant coach||Stefano Agresti|
|Fitness coach||Eugenio Albarella|
|Goalkeeping coach||Maurizio Guido|
- The following players were called up for 2019 AFC Asian Cup
- Match date: 5 January 2019 to 1 February 2019
|No.||Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Caps||Goals||Club|
|1||GK||Ali Khasif||9 June 1987||45||0||Al Jazira|
|17||GK||Khalid Eisa||15 September 1989||21||0||Al Ain|
|22||GK||Mohammed Al-Shamsi||4 January 1997||0||0||Al Wahda|
|3||DF||Walid Abbas||11 June 1985||63||0||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai|
|4||DF||Khalifa Mubarak||30 October 1993||1||0||Al Nasr|
|6||DF||Fares Juma Al Saadi||30 December 1988||34||2||Al Jazira|
|12||DF||Khalifa Al Hammadi||6 November 1998||0||0||Al Jazira|
|18||DF||Al Hassan Saleh||25 June 1991||0||0||Sharjah|
|19||DF||Ismail Ahmed||7 July 1985||26||0||Al Ain|
|23||DF||Mohamed Ahmed||16 April 1989||15||2||Al Ain|
|2||MF||Ali Salmeen||4 February 1995||8||1||Al Wasl|
|5||MF||Amer Abdulrahman||3 July 1989||44||2||Al Ain|
|8||MF||Majed Hassan||1 August 1992||38||1||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai|
|9||MF||Bandar Al-Ahbabi||9 July 1990||0||0||Al Ain|
|13||MF||Khamis Esmaeel||16 August 1989||12||0||Al Wasl|
|15||MF||Ismail Al Hammadi||1 July 1988||107||14||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai|
|16||MF||Mohamed Abdulrahman||4 February 1989||33||1||Al Ain|
|20||MF||Saif Rashid||25 January 1994||2||1||Sharjah|
|7||FW||Ali Mabkhout||5 October 1990||65||46||Al Jazira|
|10||FW||Ismail Matar||7 April 1983||126||36||Al Wahda|
|11||FW||Ahmed Khalil||8 June 1991||100||50||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai|
|14||FW||Rayan Yaslam||23 November 1994||0||0||Al Ain|
|21||FW||Khalfan Mubarak||9 May 1995||12||1||Al Jazira|
The following players have also been called up to the United Arab Emirates squad within the last 18 months.
|Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Caps||Goals||Club||Latest call-up|
|GK||Hassan Hamza||10 November 1994||0||0||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|GK||Ahmed Mahmoud||30 March 1989||0||0||Sharjah||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|GK||Majed Naser||1 April 1984||72||0||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai||v. Honduras, 11 October 2018|
|GK||Fahad Al-Dhanhani||3 September 1991||0||0||Baniyas||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|DF||Abdulaziz Haikal||10 September 1990||27||5||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai||v. Gabon, 25 March 2018|
|DF||Abdelaziz Sanqour||7 May 1989||36||1||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|DF||Salem Sultan||5 September 1993||3||0||Al Wahda||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|DF||Hamdan Al-Kamali||2 May 1989||52||5||Al Wahda||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|DF||Mohanad Salem||1 March 1985||57||2||Al Ain||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|DF||Khalifa Al Hammadi||6 November 1998||0||0||Al Jazira||v. Bolivia, 16 November 2018|
|DF||Ahmed Rashed||19 January 1997||0||0||Al Wahda||v. Bolivia, 16 November 2018|
|DF||Majed Suroor||14 October 1997||0||0||Sharjah||v. Bolivia, 16 November 2018|
|DF||Ahmed Al-Yassi||1 July 1988||0||0||Al Nasr||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|DF||Mohammed Marzooq||23 January 1989||0||0||Al Nasr||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|DF||Mahmoud Khamees||28 October 1987||27||1||Al Nasr||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|MF||Amer Omar Bazuhair||7 June 1991||0||0||Emirates||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|MF||Ahmed Ali||28 January 1990||8||1||Al Dhafra||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|MF||Mohamed Al-Shehhi||30 March 1988||34||7||Sharjah||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|MF||Tareq Al-Khodaim||19 May 1990||1||1||Al Wahda||v. Laos, 11 September 2018|
|MF||Hassan Ibrahim||19 October 1990||4||0||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|MF||Habib Al Fardan||11 November 1990||12||6||Al Nasr||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|MF||Omar Abdulrahman||20 September 1991||71||11||Al-Hilal||v. Bolivia, 16 November 2018|
|MF||Tareq Ahmed||12 March 1988||6||0||Al Nasr||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|MF||Ahmed Barman||5 February 1994||4||0||Al Ain||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|FW||Ahmed Al Attas||28 September 1995||5||1||Shabab Al Ahli Dubai||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|FW||Yousif Saeed||28 September 1994||0||0||Sharjah||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|FW||Haboush Saleh||13 July 1989||10||1||Baniyas||v. Oman, 5 January 2018|
|FW||Mohamed Al-Akbari||15 March 1996||6||1||Al Nasr||v. Gabon, 25 March 2018|
|FW||Ahmed Malallah||9 November 1991||3||1||Emirates||v. Gabon, 25 March 2018|
|FW||Salem Saleh||14 January 1991||12||5||Al Nasr||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|FW||Mohammed Fawzi||23 October 1990||13||2||Al Jazira||v. Venezuela, 16 October 2018|
|FW||Ahmed Rabee||14 August 1995||0||0||Al Jazira||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
|FW||Zaid Al-Ameri||14 January 1997||0||0||Al Jazira||v. Yemen, 20 November 2018|
Recent and forthcoming fixtures
|22 March 2018 2018 King's Cup||Slovakia||2–1||United Arab Emirates||Bangkok, Thailand|
||Stadium: Rajamangala National Stadium|
Referee: Gopalakrishnan Letchman (Singapore)
|25 March 2018 2018 King's Cup||United Arab Emirates||0–1||Gabon||Bangkok, Thailand|
|16:30 UTC+7||Report||Madinda 14'||Stadium: Rajamangala National Stadium|
Referee: Gopalakrishnan Letchman (Singapore)
|18 August 2018 Friendly||Andorra||0–0||United Arab Emirates||Grödig, Austria|
|18:00 UTC+2||Report||Stadium: Das.Goldberg Stadion|
Referee: Christopher Jäger (Austria)
|6 September 2018 Friendly||Trinidad and Tobago||2–0||United Arab Emirates||Girona, Spain|
|18:00 UTC+2||Guerra 37'
|Report||Stadium: Estadi Montilivi|
Referee: Hugo Miguel (Portugal)
|11 September 2018 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||3–0||Laos||Palamós, Spain|
|20:00 UTC+2||Mabkhout 24', 26'
|Report||Stadium: Estadi Palamós Costa Brava|
Referee: Fabio Verissimo (Portugal)
|11 October 2018 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||1–1||Honduras||Barcelona, Spain|
|18:00 UTC+2||Abdulrahman 32'||Report||Quioto 18'||Stadium: Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys|
Referee: João Capela (Portugal)
|16 October 2018 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||0–2||Venezuela||Barcelona, Spain|
|17:00 UTC+2||Report||Mago 1'
|Stadium: Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys|
Referee: Carlos Taborda Xistra (Portugal)
|16 November 2018 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||0–0||Bolivia||Dubai, United Arab Emirates|
|18:25 UTC+4||Report||Stadium: Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum Stadium|
Referee: Ammar Ashkanani (Kuwait)
|20 November 2018 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||2–0||Yemen||Dubai, United Arab Emirates|
|18:25 UTC+4||Rashid 20'
|Report||Stadium: Zabeel Stadium|
Referee: Shukri Al Hanfosh (Saudi Arabia)
|5 January 2019 2019 Asian Cup||United Arab Emirates||1–1||Bahrain||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
|20:00 UTC+4||Khalil 88' (pen.)||Report||Al Romaihi 78'||Stadium: Zayed Sports City Stadium|
Referee: Adham Makhadmeh (Jordan)
|10 January 2019 2019 Asian Cup||India||0–2||United Arab Emirates||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
|20:00 UTC+4||Report||Khalf. Mubarak 41'
|Stadium: Zayed Sports City Stadium|
Referee: César Arturo Ramos (Mexico)
|14 January 2019 2019 Asian Cup||United Arab Emirates||1–1||Thailand||Al Ain, United Arab Emirates|
|20:00 UTC+4||Mabkhout 7'||Report||Thitipan 41'||Stadium: Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium|
Referee: Ryuji Sato (Japan)
|21 January 2019 2019 Asian Cup||United Arab Emirates||v||Kyrgyzstan||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
|Stadium: Zayed Sports City Stadium|
FIFA World Cup record
|FIFA World Cup record||FIFA World Cup qualification record|
|1930 to 1974||Not eligible to enter||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1978||Did not enter||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1982||Did not enter||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1986||Did not qualify||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||4||2||1||1||5||4|
|1994 to 2018||Did not qualify||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||83||36||15||33||142||100|
|2022||To be determined||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|2026||To be determined||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||0||0||0||0||0||0|
- * Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.
AFC Asian Cup record
|AFC Asian Cup record||AFC Asian Cup qualification|
|1956 to 1976||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|2000||Did not qualify||4||3||0||1||12||2|
FIFA Confederations Cup record
|FIFA Confederations Cup record|
|1992||Did not qualify|
|1999||Did not qualify|
Asian Games record
- Football at the Asian Games has been an under-23 tournament since 2002.
|Asian Games record|
|1951||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1954||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1958||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1962||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1966||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1970||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1974||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1978||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1982||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1990||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|2002–present||See United Arab Emirates national under-23 football team|
Gulf Cup record
|Arabian Gulf Cup record|
|1970||Bahrain||Did not enter||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|1972||Saudi Arabia||Third place||3||1||0||2||1||11|
|2002||Saudi Arabia||Sixth place||5||1||0||4||3||7|
|2014||Saudi Arabia||Third place||5||2||2||1||7||5|
Pan Arab Games record
|Pan Arab Games record|
Palestine Cup of Nations
Head to head against other countries
As of 13 January 2019
Positive Record Neutral Record Negative Record
|Trinidad and Tobago||2||0||1||1||3||5||−2|
- Active players are shown in bold. As of 14 January 2019.
- Winners (2): 2007, 2013
- Runner-up (4): 1986, 1988, 1994, 2017
- Third place (5): 1972, 1976, 1982, 1998, 2014
- Fourth place (5): 1974, 1984, 1992, 1996, 2010
- Winners (1): 2005
- OSN Cup
- Winners (1): 2013
- Football in the United Arab Emirates
- United Arab Emirates women's national football team
- United Arab Emirates national under-23 football team
- United Arab Emirates national under-20 football team
- United Arab Emirates national under-17 football team
- "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. 20 December 2018. Retrieved 20 December 2018.
- Elo rankings change compared to one year ago. "World Football Elo Ratings". eloratings.net. 18 January 2019. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
- "Political tension spills on the pitch between UAE and Qatar in AFC U19". 18 October 2018.
- Yahoo! Sports: Asian Football Confederation apologize for calling UAE national team ‘Sand Monkeys’
- "World Football Elo Ratings: United Arab Emirates". Eloratings.net. 5 January 2019. Retrieved 5 January 2019.
- Roberto Mamrud; Karel Stokkermans. "Players with 100+ Caps and 30+ International Goals". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 22 March 2012. Retrieved 5 April 2012.
- UAE Football Association official website (in Arabic)