Korea Republic made to wait for World Cup qualification

Korea Republic will have to for the final day of the third round of Asian qualifying to book their place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup after being held to a 0-0 draw by Iran on Thursday.

With the advantage of home support at the Seoul World Cup Stadium and coming up against opponents who had already secured their progress, the South Koreans entered the game with every chance of securing a crucial victory.

Their prospects were further boosted as the visitors were reduced to ten men seven minutes after halftime, when Saeid Ezatolahi was issued his marching orders.

Nonetheless, Korea Republic were just unable to find a way past a stubborn Iranian defence and their two-point lead in second place means qualification will now go down to the wire.

Syria are now in third place after overtaking Uzbekistan with an impressive 3-1 win over Qatar in a game played at the neutral venue of the Hang Jebat Stadium in Malaysia.

After Omar Kharbin had fired the Syrians ahead after just seven minutes, Qatar hit back through an Ali Asad strike in the 35th minute.

However, Kharbin was in inspired form and struck again nine minutes into the second half, before Mahmoud Al-Mawas added a third deep into injury time to wrap up the three points.

Finally, China kept alive their hopes of qualifying through the playoffs after beating Uzbekistan 1-0 at the Wuhan Sports Center Stadium, meaning they can still finish third in the group.

It initially looked as though a draw was on the cards until the 84th minute, when Gao Lin converted from the penalty spot to win it for the Chinese.

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