Qadsia SC advanced to the semi-finals of the AFC Cup despite suffering a 2-0 loss to Al Jaish in the second leg of their quarter-final tie at Kuwait Sports Club Stadium on Tuesday.
The Kuwaiti side were undone by goals from Mohamad Akkad and Mahmoood Al Baher in the 36th and 51st minute respectively, but won 3-2 on aggregate thanks to their 3-0 win in the first leg last month.
Jaish knew their slim hopes of levelling the tie would be assisted by an early goal and dominated the early exchanges as they went in search of the lead.
The Syrians started brightly and had Qadsia on the back foot but failed to create any clear-cut chances until Akkad opened the scoring.
Ezzeddin Al Awad bombed down the left flank and squared the ball to Akkad, who hit a first time shot beyond opposition goalkeeper Ahmed Al Fadhli and into the net.
Jaish didn’t have to wait long for a second goal, with Al Baher doubling the lead just six minutes into the second half.
This time the goal came as a result of an opposition error instead of ingenuity, when Al Fadhli under hit a pass intended for one of his defenders.
Baha Al Din Karout latched onto the loose ball before playing in Al Baher, who curled his shot into the top left corner.
Jaish needed just one more goal to level the aggregate scores and force the match to extra time, but they almost went further behind when Bader Al Mutawa was awarded and then missed a penalty in stoppage time.
Neither side managed to score in the final seconds of the game, and Qadsia advanced despite suffering defeat.
Qadsia will face Malaysia’s Johor Darul Ta'zim in the semi-finals. Johor beat South China 3-1 in Hong Kong on Tuesday to win 4-2 on aggregate.