23rd Arabian Gulf Cup
Tournament details
Host countryKuwait
Dates22 December 2017 – 5 January 2018
Teams8 (from 1 confederation)
Venue(s)2 (in 1 host city)
Final positions
Champions Oman (2nd title)
Runners-up United Arab Emirates
Tournament statistics
Matches played15
Goals scored23 (1.53 per match)
Top scorer(s)Bahrain Jamal Rashid
Qatar Almoez Ali
Iraq Ali Husni
Iraq Ali Faez
Oman Said Al-Ruzaiqi
(2 goals each)
Best player(s)Oman Ahmed Kano
Best goalkeeperUnited Arab Emirates Khalid Eisa
Fair play award Kuwait
2014
2019

The 23rd Arabian Gulf Cup (Arabic: كأس الخليج العربي‎‎) was the 23rd edition of the biennial football competition for the eight members of the Arab Gulf Cup Football Federation. It took place in Kuwait from 22 December 2017 until 5 January 2018. Oman won their second title, defeating the United Arab Emirates in the final on penalties following a goalless draw.

This tournament has the fewest goals-per-game average (1.53) in the history of Arabian Gulf Cup tournaments.

Hosting

The Gulf Cup tournament was originally scheduled to be in 2016. It was delayed to 2017 after Kuwait was suspended by FIFA, and the tournament was moved to Qatar.[1][2][3]

The tournament was originally scheduled to be held in Basra, Iraq, with an official decision set to be made in February 2015. On 2 February 2015, the Iraqi Ministry of Youth announced that Iraq would not host the competition due to a financial crisis in Iraq, but hoped to host the next edition in 2018.[4][5] It would have been the second time that Iraq had hosted this competition after 1979 which was held in the capital Baghdad. Iraq was set to organize the two previous editions in 2013 and 2014, but the tournament shifted each time, after concerns over preparations and security.[6] Instead, it was moved to Kuwait to be the hosts for the fourth time, after the editions of 1974, 1990 and 2003.

On 3 July 2015, it was announced that the awarding of hosting rights to Kuwait was postponed after reviewing the technical reports, and that a further announcement would be made later that month. The dates of the competition were also slightly changed to take place from 22 December 2015 to 4 January 2016.[7] Again, on 3 August 2015, the dates of the championship were pushed back to December 2016 or January 2017 due to infrastructure problems in Kuwait, but Kuwait would remain the hosts of the competition. This again was changed in late August, when Kuwait announced that they would host as initially agreed in December 2015, that was after most domestic leagues in the region had re-arranged their calendars due to the earlier postponement.[8][9]

On 19 October 2015, Kuwait withdrew from hosting following Kuwait Football Association's suspension from FIFA.[2] Kuwait were to be once again re-instated as hosts on 27 April 2016, if their suspension by FIFA was lifted by May 2016, failing this, the tournament would be hosted by Qatar in December 2017.[10] The suspension was not lifted at the 66th FIFA Congress and therefore, as decided from the earlier announcement on 27 April, the tournament would be moved to Qatar to be played in December 2017.[11]

Concerns were later raised on Qatar's hosting of the event due to the Qatar diplomatic crisis, although no official announcement has been made by 11 September 2017.[12] In November 2017, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain pulled out of the Gulf Cup.[13] On 6 December 2017, after Kuwait's adoption of a new sports law, Kuwait FA's FIFA suspension was lifted.[14][15] On 7 December 2017, it was announced that Kuwait will again host the tournament after Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain threatened to withdraw because of the said diplomatic crisis.

Teams

Team Finals
appearance
Previous best
performance
FIFA Rankings
December 2017
 Qatar 23rd Winners (1992, 2004, 2014) 102
 Saudi Arabia 22nd Winners (1994, 2002, 2003–04) 63
 Bahrain 23rd Runners-up (1970, 1982, 1992, 2003–04) 115
 Oman 21st Winners (2009) 101
 Iraq 14th Winners (1979, 1984, 1988) 79
 United Arab Emirates 22nd Winners (2007, 2013) 73
 Yemen 8th Group stage (2003–04, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2013) 121
 Kuwait 23rd Winners (1970, 1972, 1974*, 1976, 1982,
1986, 1990*, 1996, 1998, 2010)
189

Venues

Kuwait City Kuwait City
Jaber Al-Ahmad International Stadium Al Kuwait SC Stadium
Capacity: 60,000 Capacity: 18,500

Squads

Further information: 23rd Arabian Gulf Cup squads

Group stage

All times are local (UTC+03:00).

Group A

Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
 Oman 3 2 0 1 3 1 +2 6
 United Arab Emirates 3 1 2 0 1 0 +1 5
 Saudi Arabia 3 1 1 1 2 3 −1 4
 Kuwait 3 0 1 2 1 3 −2 1
Source:[citation needed]
Kuwait 1–2 Saudi Arabia
Report
United Arab Emirates 1–0 Oman
Report

United Arab Emirates 0–0 Saudi Arabia
Report
Jaber International Stadium, Kuwait City
Attendance: 47,556
Referee: Aziz Asimov (Uzbekistan)
Kuwait 0–1 Oman
Report Kano Goal 58' (pen.)
Jaber International Stadium, Kuwait City
Referee: Saoud Al-Athbah (Qatar)

Oman 2–0 Saudi Arabia
Al-Ruzaiqi Goal 58'77' Report
Kuwait 0–0 United Arab Emirates
Report

Group B

Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
 Iraq 3 2 1 0 6 2 +4 7
 Bahrain 3 1 2 0 3 2 +1 5
 Qatar 3 1 1 1 6 3 +3 4
 Yemen 3 0 0 3 0 8 −8 0
Source:[citation needed]
Qatar 4–0 Yemen
Report
Bahrain 1–1 Iraq
Report

Yemen 0–1 Bahrain
Report Rashid Goal 39' (pen.)
Iraq 2–1 Qatar
Report Almoez Ali Goal 17'

Qatar 1–1 Bahrain
Al-Haydos Goal 45+5' (pen.) Report Madan Goal 57'
Iraq 3–0 Yemen
Report

Knockout stage

All times are local (UTC+03:00).

 
Semi-finalsFinal
 
      
 
2 January – Kuwait City
 
 
 Oman1
 
5 January – Kuwait City
 
 Bahrain0
 
 Oman0 (5)
 
2 January – Kuwait City
 
 United Arab Emirates (p)0 (4)
 
 Iraq0 (2)
 
 
 United Arab Emirates (p)0 (4)
 

Semi-finals

Oman 1–0 Bahrain
Abduljabbar Goal 29' (o.g.) Report

Iraq 0–0 (a.e.t.) United Arab Emirates
Report
Penalties
2–4

Final

United Arab Emirates 0–0 (a.e.t.) Oman
Report
Penalties
4–5

Winner

 23rd Arabian Gulf Cup Winner 

Oman
Second title

Goalscorers

2 goals
1 goal
Own goal

Awards

The following awards were given:

Award Player
Fair Play Award  Kuwait
Most Valuable Player Oman Ahmed Kano
Best Goalkeeper United Arab Emirates Khalid Eisa

Team statistics

This table shows all team performance.

Final phase
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1  Oman 5 3 1 1 4 1 +3 10
2  United Arab Emirates 5 1 4 0 1 0 +1 7
3  Iraq 4 2 2 0 6 2 +4 8
4  Bahrain 4 1 2 1 3 3 0 5
Source:[citation needed]
Eliminated in the group stage
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
5  Qatar 3 1 1 1 6 3 +3 4
6  Saudi Arabia 3 1 1 1 2 3 −1 4
7  Kuwait 3 0 1 2 1 3 −2 1
8  Yemen 3 0 0 3 0 8 −8 0
Source:[citation needed]

Media

Broadcasting

Territory Channel
 Bahrain Bahrain Sport
 Iraq Al-Iraqiya Sport
 Kuwait KTV Sport
 Oman Oman TV Sport
 Qatar Al Kass Sports Channels
 Saudi Arabia Al Riyadiah
MBC Pro Sports
 United Arab Emirates ADTV Sport
Dubai Sports

References

  1. ^ "Kuwait set to replace Iraq as Gulf Cup hosts in 2016". QFA. Retrieved 3 February 2015.
  2. ^ a b "KUNA : Kuwait won't host 23rd Gulf Cup – Cabinet – Government". kuna.net.kw. 19 October 2015.
  3. ^ "Qatar confirmed hosts of 23rd Gulf Cup Football Championship". Times of Oman. 22 May 2016.
  4. ^ "Iraq named 2016 Gulf Cup hosts, final decision in three months". Qatar FA. Retrieved 18 November 2014.
  5. ^ "Iraq officially suspends hosting Khaliji 23 Championship". Iraqi News.com. Retrieved 2 February 2015.
  6. ^ "Gulf Cup shifts from Iraq to Saudi Arabia". SFGate. Retrieved 8 October 2013.
  7. ^ "Ali bin Khalifa attends GCC Associations meeting". BFA. Archived from the original on 6 July 2015. Retrieved 3 July 2015.
  8. ^ "Arabian Gulf League to be affected as UAE domestic kick-off is postponed". Sport 360. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
  9. ^ "23rd Gulf Cup to be held Dec 22: KFA". Kuwait Times. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  10. ^ "2016 Gulf Cup in Kuwait in December 'if FIFA sanctions lifted'KFA". Qatar Football Association. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
  11. ^ "FIFA Congress drives football forward, first female secretary general appointed". FIFA. Retrieved 14 May 2016.
  12. ^ "Gulf Cup of Nations to be cancelled as concerns emerge over Qatar's ability to host 2022 FIFA World Cup – Independent.ie". Independent.ie. 11 September 2017. Retrieved 11 September 2017.
  13. ^ Editorial, Reuters. "Saudi, UAE, Bahrain to miss Qatar's Gulf Cup amid rift". U.K.
  14. ^ "Suspension of the Kuwait Football Association lifted". FIFA.com. 6 December 2017. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  15. ^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking – November 2017". FIFA.com. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  16. ^ "2017 Arabian Gulf Cup - Final". refereesfifa.blogspot.fr. 5 January 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2018.