Fernandes' double earns Bahrain men's soccer trophy in Gulf derby at military games

Source: Xinhua| 2019-10-27 23:02:10|Editor: Yurou
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WUHAN, Oct. 27 (Xinhua) -- In the concluding competition of tournament, Thiago Fernandes scored twice to help Bahrain win their first Military World Games soccer gold medal by beating Gulf neighbours Qatar 3-1 at Hankou Culture and Sports Center on Sunday.

Fernandes scored two late goals to take his tournament tally to five after Qatar had gifted Bahrain the lead through an own goal in the 71st minute.

"It's my job as the number nine to score," Fernandes said. "I feel very happy and proud to help my team."

Separated by less than 40 kilometers of open water but by 44 places in the FIFA world rankings, there was little to choose between the two countries until Qatar defender Naif Mubarak A Alburaiki put the ball through his own net from a whipped cross by Abdulla Faraj of Bahrain.

The game then exploded into life as Fernandes doubled Bahrain's lead only two minutes later following more good work down the right wing by Faraj.

"I told my players to use more width, to play on one side and then switch direction to the other side," Bahrain coach Ahmed Al Amrei said. "We scored with this combination because we are training like that."

Qatar set up a grandstand finish when captain Meshaal Abdulla Al Qebaisi finished coolly from a flick-on by makeshift target man Alburaiki, but it was Fernandes who had the last word with a stoppage time third for Bahrain.

"I am so happy and proud of all of my players," coach Al Amrei said. "I selected these players because they are fighters. Even if maybe sometimes they have less technique or less of something else, they fight and they have spirit and this is very important."

In the men's soccer bronze medal match earlier on Sunday, two-time defending champions Algeria thrashed DPR Korea 4-0, with the inspirational Houssem Eddine Ghacha netting twice.

"My first goal made it easy for us," Ghacha said. "Our team has already won two Military World Games titles [2011 and 2015] and this was supposed to be the third, but luck was not on our side."