Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Uzbekistan and Bahrain II

An update on this absurd episode.

The Uzbeks' appeal against the replay decision had been turned down. So they've got to replay the entire playoffs from the beginning again. In fact, the first leg has just been completed over the weekend. Played on Uzbeks' home ground, it ended in a 1-1 draw.

This effectively hands Bahrain a slim advantage going into the second leg. For those not in the know, there is this rule about "away goals" that applies only in the event of the aggregate score over both legs ending in a draw. In such cases, goals scored away from home count double. So in this case, if Bahrain grinds out a 0-0 draw in the second leg, they will win the playoffs.

The second leg is this Wednesday, i.e. tomorrow. I'll really feel for the Uzbeks if they get knocked out in such a cruel manner.

171 days to go.


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