World Cup hosts Qatar are beaten 1-0 by Northern Irish minnows Linfield in Marbella practice match – despite fielding seven of the same players from their last international match
The Qatar international team hosting the World Cup have been humbled by Northern Irish club Linfield.
In a practice match in Marbella, Spain on Tuesday night, David Healy’s side beat Qatar 1-0.
Former Rangers striker Chris McKee scored the only goal of the game to give the south Belfast side the win.
David Healy and his Linfield side beat World Cup hosts Qatar 1-0 in Marbella on Tuesday night
Despite being a friendly, Qatar’s team was no scratch XI, with seven starters also fielded in their 0-0 draw against Slovenia in March.
Linfield, on a week’s training camp in Iberia, are preparing for their Champions League qualifying match against Welsh side The New Saints next month.
They will play the Cymru Premier champions in the first qualifying round, starting in Wales on July 5 before the second leg in the Northern Irish capital a week after.
Qatar, ranked No 51 in the world, qualified automatically as hosts for this year’s World Cup
Linfield, who became NIFL champions for the fourth time in succession and the 56th time ever last season, famously beat Kenya 1-0 in 2002 and lost 1-0 against world champions Argentina in 1990 ahead of the World Cup later that year.
Qatar, currently ranked 51st in the FIFA rankings, qualified automatically as hosts for this year’s World Cup, set to take place in the west Asian country in November and December.
Felix Sanchez’ men will play Ecuador in the competition curtain-raiser on November 21 before facing Senegal and Holland to complete their group.