United Arab Emirates national football team
The White Jersey|
Eyal Zayed (Zayed's sons)
|Association||U.A.E. Football Association|
|Sub-confederation||WAFF (West Asia)|
|Head coach||Mahdi Ali|
|Most caps||Adnan Al Talyani (161)|
|Top scorer||Adnan Al Talyani (52)|
|Current||64 6 (24 November 2016)|
|Highest||40 (November–December 1998)|
|Lowest||138 (January 2012)|
|Current||60 (28 June 2016)|
|Highest||24 (15 January 2015)|
|Lowest||140 (September 1981)|
United Arab Emirates 4–0 Qatar |
(Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; March 17, 1972)
Brunei 0–14 United Arab Emirates |
(B. S. Begawan, Brunei; April 14, 2001)
Kuwait 7-0 United Arab Emirates |
(Baghdad, Iraq; April 1, 1979)
|Appearances||1 (first in 1990)|
|Best result||Group stage, 1990|
|Appearances||9 (first in 1980)|
|Best result||Second Place, 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 UAE 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 Gulf Cup of Nations on two occasions – in 2007 when they won a title for the first time in their history and then in 2013. They finished third in the recent AFC Asian Cup and will be hosting the next edition in 2019.
The first match of UAE 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 nothing.
First Asian Cup appearances
In 1980, UAE 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 qualification for the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy. However, Zagallo resigned before the tournament and Parreira returned as head coach to lead UAE 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, UAE finished in fourth place, their best finish up to that date.
1996 AFC Asian Cup
UAE hosted 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, they lost to Saudi Arabia in a penalty shout-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.
UAE also appeared in 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.
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 UAE, including Carlos Queiroz, Roy Hodgson and Dick Advocaat. In 2006, UAE appointed Senegal's 2002 FIFA World Cup head coach, Bruno Metsu as their new manager. He led UAE to the 2007 Gulf Cup of Nations title, the country's first major achievement.
After hiring many notable European coaches, in 2012, UAE appointed 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
UAE'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, UAE 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 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 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. UAE will be hosting the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.
2018 FIFA World Cup Qualification
UAE had to face Saudi Arabia, Palestine, Timor-Leste and Malaysia in the Group A of the AFC Qualification Second Round. They ended second in the Group behind Saudi Arabia and in front of Palestine, Malaysia and Timor-Leste. In the Third Round, they will be facing Australia, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Thailand in Group B.
UAE has plenty of rivals like Uzbekistan , Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain, however the rivalry with Saudi Arabia is often considered to be the biggest and many Emirati football fans did not enjoy the recent match against Saudi Arabia in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification.
The United Arab Emirates is known by supporters and the media as Al-Abyad, meaning The White jersey and also Eyal Zayed which means Zayed's sons.
1992 Asian Cup Home
1994 Asian Games Home
1994 Asian Games Away
|Head coach||Mahdi Ali|
|Assistant coach||Hassan Abdouly|
|Fitness coach||Patrice Coutard|
|Goalkeeping coach||Hassan Ismail|
- The following 23 players were called up for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers:
- Match date: 15 November 2016
- Opposition: Iraq
- Caps and goals are correct as of 6 October 2016, after the match against Thailand.
|#||Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Caps||Goals||Club|
|1||GK||Majed Naser||1 April 1984||70||0||Al Ahli|
|22||GK||Ahmed Mahmoud||30 March 1989||3||0||Baniyas|
|GK||Ali Khasif||9 June 1987||11||0||Al-Jazira|
|3||DF||Walid Abbas||11 June 1985||69||5||Al Ahli|
|6||DF||Mohanad Salem||1 March 1985||47||2||Al-Ain|
|8||DF||Hamdan Al-Kamali||12 May 1989||33||5||Al-Wahda|
|9||DF||Abdulaziz Haikal||10 September 1990||29||5||Al Ahli|
|14||DF||Abdelaziz Sanqour||7 May 1989||36||1||Al Ahli|
|18||DF||Mohammed Fawzi||22 February 1990||4||0||Al-Ain|
|19||DF||Ismail Ahmed||7 July 1983||26||1||Al-Ain|
|24||DF||Mohammed Marzooq||23 January 1989||0||1||Al Shabab|
|4||MF||Habib Fardan||12 March 1990||48||6||Al Ahli|
|10||MF||Omar Abdulrahman||20 September 1991||57||6||Al-Ain|
|13||MF||Khamis Ismail||16 August 1989||27||3||Al Ahli|
|15||MF||Ismail Al Hammadi||1 July 1988||94||14||Al Ahli|
|16||MF||Mohamed Abdulrahman||1 January 1989||27||1||Al-Ain|
|20||MF||Hassan Ibrahim||19 October 1990||5||1||Al Shabab|
|21||MF||Tareq Ahmed||12 March 1988||4||0||Al-Nasr|
|MF||Khalfan Mubarak||9 May 1995||0||0||Al Jazira|
|2||FW||Salem Saleh||14 January 1991||13||7||Al-Nasr|
|FW||Ismail Matar||7 April 1983||114||36||Al-Wahda|
|7||FW||Ali Mabkhout||5 October 1990||46||38||Al-Jazira|
|11||FW||Ahmed Khalil||8 June 1991||87||49||Al Ahli|
Recent and forthcoming fixtures
|16 January 2016 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||2–1||Iceland||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
| Al Hammadi 26'
|Report||Kjartansson 14'|| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
|18 March 2016 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||6–1||Bangladesh||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
| Al Hammadi 10', 73'
Saleh 83', 87'
Mabkhout 90' (pen.)
|? 15'|| Stadium: Zayed Sports City Stadium
|24 March 2016 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||United Arab Emirates||2–0||Palestine||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
| Al Hammadi 33'
Khalil 60' (pen.)
| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
Referee: Ben Williams (Australia)
|29 March 2016 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||United Arab Emirates||1–1||Saudi Arabia||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
|O. Abdulrahman 52'||Al-Jassim 24'|| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
Referee: Nawaf Shukralla (Bahrain)
|3 June 2016 2016 King's Cup||United Arab Emirates||1–3||Jordan||Bangkok, Thailand|
|17:00 UTC+7:00||Al-Shamsi 45+2'|| Abdel-Rahman 8'
| Stadium: Rajamangala Stadium
Referee: Aziz Asimov (Uzbekistan)
|5 June 2016 2016 King's Cup||United Arab Emirates||0–1||Syria||Bangkok, Thailand|
|17:00 UTC+7:00|| Stadium: Rajamangala Stadium
|1 September 2016 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||Japan||1–2||United Arab Emirates||Saitama, Japan|
| Khalil 20'
Khalil 54' (pen.)
| Stadium: Saitama Stadium 2002
|6 September 2016 World Cup Q||United Arab Emirates||0–1||Australia||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates|
|19:30 UTC+4|| Report
|Cahill 75'|| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
Referee: Mohd Amirul Izwan Yaacob (Malaysia)
|6 October 2016 World Cup Q||United Arab Emirates||3–1||Thailand||Abu Dabi, United Arab Emirates|
|20:00 UTC+4:00|| Mabkhout 14', 47'
| Report (FIFA)
|Chanabut 65'|| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
Referee: Liu Kwok Man (Hong Kong)
|9 October 2016 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||4–0||Niger||Dubai, United Arab Emirates|
|17:00 UTC+4:00|| Salem Saleh 15', 20'
Hassan Ibrahim 55'
Mohammed Marzooq 84'
| Attendance: 2
Referee: Abdulla Mohammed
|11 October 2016 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||Saudi Arabia||3–0||United Arab Emirates||Jeddah, Saudi Arabia|
|9 November 2016 Friendly||United Arab Emirates||2–0||Bahrain||Al Ain, United Arab Emirates|
| Ismail Matar 31'
Walid Abbas 59'
| Stadium: Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium
|15 November 2016 2018 WCQ||United Arab Emirates||2–0||Iraq||Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium|
| Khalil 26'
|Report|| Referee: Ilgiz Tantashev (Uzbekistan)
|26 November 2016 Friendly||Bulgaria||0–3||United Arab Emirates||Kharkiv, Ukraine|
|Khalil 9, 30, 79'|| Stadium: Metalist Oblast Sports Complex
|23 March 2017 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||United Arab Emirates||v||Japan||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
|28 March 2017 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||Australia||v||United Arab Emirates|
|13 June 2017 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||Thailand||v||United Arab Emirates||Bangkok, Thailand|
| Stadium: Rajamangala Stadium
|31 August 2017 2018 FIFA World Cup Q||United Arab Emirates||v||Saudi Arabia||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
| Stadium: Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium
FIFA World Cup record
|World Cup record|
|1930 to 1974||Not eligible to enter||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|1978||Did not enter||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|1982||Did not enter||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|1986||Did not qualify||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|1994 to 2014||Did not qualify||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
- * Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.
AFC Asian Cup record
|1956 to 1976||Did not enter|
|2000||Did not qualify|
FIFA Confederations Cup record
|FIFA Confederations Cup record|
|1992||Did not qualify|
|1999||Did not qualify|
Gulf Cup of Nations record
|1970||Bahrain||Did not enter|
|1972||Saudi Arabia||Third place|
|2002||Saudi Arabia||Sixth place|
|2014||Saudi Arabia||Third place|
- Active players are shown in Bold. As of October 7, 2016.
- Winners (2): 2007, 2013
- Runner-up (3): 1986, 1988, 1994
- Third place (5): 1972, 1976, 1982, 1998, 2014
- Winners (1): 2005
- 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
- Roberto Mamrud; Karel Stokkermans. "Players with 100+ Caps and 30+ International Goals". RSSSF. Archived from the original on March 22, 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-05.