Iraq qualifies for Paris Olympics men’s soccer tournament with win over Indonesia at U23 Asian Cup

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Iraq qualified for the men’s soccer tournament at the Paris Olympics with a 2-1 win over Indonesia in the third-place playoff at the Under-23 Asian Cup on Thursday.

Ali Jasim's extra-time winner means Iraq takes Asia’s third automatic place at the Olympics. Japan and Uzbekistan, who meet in Friday’s cup final, have both already qualified for the Paris Games.

Indonesia took the lead after 19 minutes at Abdullah bin Khalifa Stadium in the meeting of the two defeated semifinalists when Ivar Jenner scored from outside the area.

Eight minutes later, Zaid Tahseen headed home at the near post to make it 1-1.

The game went to extra time and Iraq took the lead in the 96th. The Indonesian defense misjudged the bounce of a long pass allowing Jasim to run free into the right side of the area. He sent a powerful shot across the diving goalkeeper to put Iraq on the brink of its sixth Olympic appearance.

Indonesia, still searching for a first Olympic appearance since 1956, almost took the game to a penalty shootout in the final action but Justin Hubner’s header was cleared off the line.

There is still one more opportunity for Indonesia. It will face Guinea in a May 9 playoff for a place in Paris.


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