As it happened: Auckland City knocked out of Club World Cup after top performance by Al Jazira keeper

Relive 1 NEWS NOW's live updates of this morning's FIFA Club World Cup match between Auckland City FC and Al Jazira at Hazza Bin Zayed Staadium in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.


Whistle goes and it's over. Auckland City are out. It was a great game of football but they just couldn't figure out how to get past Khalif. Still dominated the stats in the second half but the final touch just never came. That'll do it for us. 

90+2min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AJA SAVE! And there's another top save! Auckland roll the dice down the left side and fire it in but Khalif reads it once more and smothers the ball. With just two left, they probably won't get another chance like that.

90min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Four minutes of added time here. Al Jazira's last sub is a defender. This is it. 

88min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Two minutes left and Auckland is playing forward now. Howieson gets another ball at the top but he's launched it high. That may have been the last chance.

85min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Auckland get the ball into the box but there's only two of them and six Al Jazira defenders waiting. Two shots are deflected before the ref gives a free kick for a hand ball. 5 to go. Has Auckland got something up their sleeve? 

82min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AKL SAVE! Zubikarai joins the party with a good save of his own but its foiled moments later by a poor challenge from one of his defenders. Close free kick coming up and Auckland is making a wall.

80min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AJA SAVE! Auckland get a free kick from 30m out. They go for the glory goal and Khasif reads it easily. 10 to go.

76min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AKL CORNER! Auckland aren't letting up here as they get more and more relentless with the attack. The only problem is they seem to be missing that last touch. That and Khasif is having the performance of his life. Kick comes in but its off target and thumped away downfield.

75min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AJA SAVE! Another save! Khasif is having a brilliant night. Much better attack from Auckland as they move the ball down the left. The ball comes in with a cross, it's perfect, Auckland are there to meet it but Khasif reads it again and locks it down!

73min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AJA SAVE! Khasif makes another save but this is the easiest of the night. Auckland get the space and its Tade looking to strike, but he keeps it low and straight at the keeper! Not the kind of shot he would have wanted to put up for sure.

71min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Al Jazira get a free kick near the box but it's too high as well. Auckland City immediately respond with a counter attack but it's nullified in midfield.

67min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Tavano lets one rip from deep but it is well and curling away to the left of the left post. Looking a little desperate now.

64min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AKL CORNER! Another corner, another floated ball missed. Auckland struggling to convert their opportunities and Al Jazira are happy to wind the clock down.

59min: AJA 1-0 AKL

McCowatt is off for Auckland. He's had a good night tonight with some darting runs and a couple nice touches near the box. Al Jazira restart things with a throw in on halfway.

57min: AJA 1-0 AKL

First change of the match is from Al Jazira. Auckland are looking very positive with ball in hand but they can't quite get it to find the net just yet.

54min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Pressure is buiilding here. Auckland get another ball into the box and Howieson lets fly again. But it's deflected away off an Al Jazira defender and Auckland retain the ball. How long can Al Jazira keep this up?

51min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AJA SAVE! Another amazing save from Khasif! Brilliant ball in from McCowatt on the right and Al Jazira deflect. It sits up perfect for Howieson and he lets one rip from the top of the box but Khasif reads and deflects it for a corner. That ball came in at pace! 

48min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Stoppage in play as one of the Al Jazira players go down. Auckland get things going again and earn themselves a free kick on halfway.

45min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Back underway with Auckland.


The free kick misses the mark and rolls into touch for halftime. Good contest in the first 45 but Al Jazira have taken their chances better despite having less. Auckland dominating the stats with 60 per cent possession, 5 shots and two on target with four corners - All Al Jazira have is one shot but that's the one that counts at the moment. We'll be back shortly with the second 45.

45min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Just one minute of added time and Auckland has a free kick.

44min: AJA 1-0 AKL

Bit of argy-bargy going on in the last 5 min and the ref has had enough. He calls the players in, gets them to shake hands and indicates the next bit of sillyness is a yellow.

41min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AKL CORNER! White is back on the field and immediately making an impact. He charges in from the right wing into the box and he's looking for a target, can't find anyone as he's contested and gives his team a corner. This time it's just a wild kick in and no one goes up for it. Missed chance.

38min: AJA 1-0 AKL

AJA GOAL! Romarinho comes up with a beautiful finish and Al Jazira take the lead. The Brazilian starts things off down the left and feeds it towards the box. Back heel back to him and he feeds forward again, deflected but it sits up nicely for him 5m outside the box and he lets one rip. Stays low and it finds the net in the bottom left corner.  

35min: AJA 0-0 AKL

There's a stoppage in play and it's White that is down. This will be a big loss for Auckland. White fed a ball into the box on the right but as he did he slid and his foot collided with the advertsiing boards. He's gripping at his ankle. He's coming off.

30min: AJA 0-0 AKL

AJA SAVE! First real scoring chance of the night for either team goes to Auckland as they catch Al Jazira off guard with a forward ball. It goes down the left wing and is fed to McCowatt in the middle. He lets rip and Khasif dives to his right to make the save. Brilliant read but a confidence booster for Auckland there.

28min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Ball holding up around midfield as both teams are getting more pressing in contesting possession. A reminder this match must have a winner so if there's no goals after regular time it'll head to extras and after that, a shootout.

24min: AJA 0-0 AKL

AKL CORNER! Third corner coming up as Auckland finally pull the trigger and look to get the ball in the box. Al Jazira respond and send the ball dead. Corner comes in and Auckland connect but it's a free kick to Al Jazira after a poor contest in the air.

21min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Al Jazira really upping the attack now. Crowd starting to get behind them as they try a cross into box but this Auckland defence continues to defuse it. Al Jazira gets a throw in, they go quick and try another feed in but it's shut down once more. Auckland are off and running on the counter-attack but slow the tempo down at halfway.

19min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Al Jazira loft another ball in but the contest results in a free kick to Auckland City. Auckland definitely have had more ball here but Al Jazira are starting to get good chances with the small amount of possession they've had.

16min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Al Jazira look threatening again as they feed a ball to dangerman Mabkhout near the box. He looks to run but is shut down by a brilliant tackle from Berlanga. Pressure diverted.

13min: AJA 0-0 AKL

AKL CORNER! Another corner coming up. First one floated in too high. This one comes in and it's the same issue. Al Jazira survive and get a throw in.

12min: AJA 0-0 AKL

AKL CORNER! Auckland counter perfectly and get down to the box with ease. It's sitting at the top of the box, they let one rip and it's deflected! Was definitely on target. First corner of the night coming up!

11min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Al Jazira get their first chance and it comes from a ball lofted into the box but a wall of Blue greets it and Iwata headers it away to safety and the sideline. Al Jazira try a quick throw in but it goes to custard and Auckland get the ball.

8min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Wild shot from outside the box for McCowatt and it sails well wide of the right post for Auckland's first attempt. All the possession has belong to the NZ club so far.

6min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Auckland starting to figure this defence out and getting good territory. The Al Jazira defence keeps rushing and Auckland keep drawing them in to find holes and move up the field. First free kick of the contest comes after an Al Jazira defender arrives late with a poor contest. Auckland free kick just inside Al Jazira's half coming up.

3min: AJA 0-0 AKL

Al Jazira have been very pressing to start things off. An early forward ball is shut down by Zubikarai and Auckland respond with a ball up the left sideline. Al Jazira's defence is happy to challenge constantly though and keep forcing throw-ins. They finally get the pressure right and force a turnover midfield.


We're underway in Abu Dhabi! Al Jazira get things going. Clear night, nice crowd but not sold out. Should be some good football.

Coach Ramon Tribulietx says the team will take this year's tournament step-by-step and see what happens. Source: 1 NEWS


Forward Fabrizio Tavano is relishing his second stint with Auckland City as the Navy Blues prepare to tackle yet another Club World Cup.

Auckland meet UAE team Al Jazira in their first match early tomorrow in the United Arab Emirates, with the winner advancing to the quarter-finals against Japan team Urawa Red Diamonds

Tavano was a key figure in Auckland's run to a bronze medal win over Cruz Azul in Morocco three years ago, and has returned after a short spell in Mexican football with Tigres de la UANL in 2015.

The 24-year-old played as a centre forward for the Navy Blues following the injury to star striker Joao Moreira during that tournament and shone brightly.

He doesn't get carried away by those past successes, however, and says the key to putting together a winning start is purely down to focus.

"I don't think about what happens in the Club World Cup outside of the first game. The other possibilities don't come to my mind. I just focus on playing the first game as if it will be the last game I ever play in my life," he said.

"We know the first game is always the most important game and we will be giving more than 100 per cent to win it.

"If we get a good result against Al Jazira, OK, then we look at what happens next. At the moment there is no other team, no other game, only Al Jazira."

Tavano says Al Jazira, the UAE league title winners, present a difficult challenge with a different style of play.

"We need to be focused and play them as if this is going to be the last game we ever play in our lives."


AJA (4-2-3-1): 1. Khasif, 40. Al Attas, 4. Ali Ayed, 5. Fayez, 12. Obaid, 44. Juma, 14. Al Otaiba, 15. Mubarak, 31. Romarinho, 10. Boussoufa, 7. Mabkhout

AJA Subs: Aleedo, Khalfan, Rashidov, Al Hosani, Abdullah, Ramadan, Al-Senani, Ghilani, Alhammadi, Al-Ameri, Al Hashmi, Ibrahim

AKL (4-3-3): 1. Zubikarai, 3. Iwata, 16. Kim, 5. Berlanga, 9. White, 7. Howieson, 8. Riera, 11. Tavano, 26. McCowatt, 10. De Vries, 20. Tade

AKL Subs: Graham, Bilen, Hudson-Wihongi, Bright, Rogers, Morgan, Drake, Lea'alafa, Edge, Dordevic, Tracey, Brown



Argentine legend Maradona slams fellow countryman Messi - 'we shouldn't deify him anymore'

Argentina great Diego Maradona has hit out at his countryman Lionel Messi, saying the forward is not a leader on the pitch and should not be considered a footballing God.

Maradona, who along with Brazil's Pele is widely held to be one of the best players of all time, said Messi was one player at his club Barcelona and another with the national side.

"We shouldn't deify Messi any longer," Maradona said in an interview with Fox Sports on Saturday.

"He's Messi when he plays for Barcelona. Messi is Messi when he wears that shirt and he's another Messi with Argentina."

"He's a great player but he's not a leader. It's useless trying to make a leader out of a man who goes to the toilet 20 times before a game."

The reference was believed to be in connection with Messi's extreme nerves before games that have seen him vomit ahead of some important matches.

Messi, 31, has claimed every possible honour with Barcelona and has won the FIFA World Player of the Year award five times.

But he has struggled to reproduce the same scintillating form when wearing the blue and white shirt of Argentina.

Messi has been on the losing side in all four of his finals with Argentina - three in the Copa America and at the 2014 World Cup - and has not scored in four World Cup knockout stages.

After another disappointing tournament in Russia this year, where Argentina failed to get past the last 16, Messi opted to take a sabbatical from international football.

Maradona, who made his comments from the Mexican state of Sinaloa, where he recently took over as coach of local second-tier side Dorados, said Messi's break was a sensible one.

"I wouldn't call him up right now, but never say never. We have to take the pressure off him," he said.

Argentina beat Iraq 4-0 on Thursday with a new-look side, taking their unbeaten run since Russia to three games.

A sterner test will take place on Tuesday when they face Brazil in Saudi Arabia - without Messi.

Argentina's football superstar Lionel Messi.
Argentina's football superstar Lionel Messi shows his frustration at his team's lacklustre qualifying campaign. Source: Associated Press



PSG's Champions League demolition of Red Star Belgrade investigated for match fixing

French authorities are investigating claims of match-fixing surrounding a Champions League match between Paris Saint-Germain and Red Star Belgrade after UEFA warned them of a possible manipulation of the result.

L'Equipe newspaper reported that a Red Star official is suspected of betting 5 million euros (NZ$8.9 million) on Red Star losing by five goals. PSG won the game 6-1.

France's financial prosecutor's office told The Associated Press an investigation has been opened, but declined to comment on the report.

Red Star released a statement vehemently denying the match-fixing allegation, saying no club official was involved in the alleged "shameful acts."

According to L'Equipe, the prosecutor's office was alerted by UEFA days before the Oct. 3 game at the Parc des Princes.

ARJEL, the body in charge of regulating online gambling in France, told the newspaper it did not notice any suspicious bets on the game.

PSG forward Neymar Neymar celebrates after scoring the opening goal of his team during the Champions League Group C soccer match between Paris Saint-Germain and Red Star at Parc des Prince stadium in Paris, Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
PSG forward Neymar Neymar celebrates after scoring. Source: Associated Press



'I'm just here to train' - Usain Bolt plays down footballing career after breakthrough goals

Usain Bolt doesn't consider himself a footballer yet and doubts remain over his ability to earn an A-League contract with Central Coast, despite bagging his first brace.

Playing as a striker, Bolt scored two second half goals for the Mariners in their 4-0 win over Macarthur South West United at Campbelltown Sports Stadium in Sydney last night.

His impressive first goal came from a strong run and fierce finish and the second was a tap into an empty goal following a collision between Macarthur's goalkeeper and a defender.

Asked if would call himself a footballer, legendary track athlete Bolt said: "until I sign (a contract), I'm not saying that."

While Bolt and Mariners coach Mike Mulevy were pleased with his performance, doubts linger over whether he can improve enough to secure a contract.

His fitness is certainly better, but his ball control and on-field vision are patchy and Bolt himself concedes they are the two poorest aspects of his game.

With the A-League starting next week, Bolt is hoping the Mariners will soon provide some clarity on his prospects at the club.

"The season is coming up now, so we have to sit down after this game and figure out what we're going to do but until then, I'm just here to train and to continue,"' Bolt said.

Bolt said he definitely felt ready to play in the A-League if required, but Mulvey reiterated it could still be a while before a decision is made on whether the Jamaican gets a contract.

'I think we're all in agreement that we'll look about January," Mulvey said.

With the youth league not starting until next month and Bolt unlikely to be considered ready for A-League duty just yet, that leaves the issue of where he will get games over the next few weeks.

Mulvey didn't shed any light on that topic.

'I don't know how that's going to work, but my main mission is Brisbane next week, October 21," Mulvey said, referring to the Mariners first-round A-League game.

Mulvey praised Bolt for the insights he had passed on to the club's youngsters and the global exposure the Mariners and the region had received because of his presence.


Watch: Former Olympic champ Usain Bolt scores first goal as quest continues to become pro footballer

Olympic track great Usain Bolt's fledgling football career has received a boost after he scored two second-half goals for Central Coast Mariners, but the club look likely to wait until next year to decide whether he's worthy of an A-League contract.

The Jamaican led the Mariners' line in a central striking role in their 4-0 thrashing of A-League aspirants Macarthur South West United on Friday.

Until his brace, Bolt wasn't always convincing with his finishing, possession or passing.

But in the 55th minute he held off a defender before racing onto Ross McCormack's through-ball and beating the goalkeeper at the near post with a fierce left-foot strike.

He promptly produced his famous lightning bolt celebration.

"It was brilliant, it takes all the weight off your shoulders that first goal to relax you," Bolt said afterwards.

Just over ten minutes later, he doubled his tally when he capitalised on a defensive mix-up to pounce on a loose ball and practically walk it into an open goal.

Almost 6000 fans turned out at Campbelltown Sports Stadium and the crowd gave Bolt plenty of support whenever he touched the ball, especially one enthusiastic horn blower.

"I think I did pretty well, I'm happy with the progress I'm making," the Jamaican said.

"My positioning is much better, I think I'm doing much more in space, I'm running in space much better."

Bolt was adamant he would be ready if required for the opening round of the A-League next week.

But Mariners coach Mike Mulvey reiterated that January was still the most likely time when the club would make a decision on their famous triallist.

"You can't just react to something that's happened in front of us right now,' Mulvey said.

"He covered himself in glory tonight and I think that everybody is super pleased for him ... you've got to take your hat off to him.

"He scored a couple of goals tonight - he's still got a long way to go."

Bolt's fitness and heading were definitely better than on Friday than his last public appearance, but his ball control needs to improve.

"My controlling the ball, and seeing the field, having better vision, are my two worst areas but they have improved a lot since I've been here. But they could improve a lot more."

As early as the second minute, he broke clear but lost the ball before getting into the Macarthur box.

In the 23rd minute, Bolt regained the ball in the penalty area after losing it, but his close-range effort took a deflection off a defender and was comfortably saved.

He came close again in the 39th minute in his best moment of the first half.

The 195cm Jamaican made a well-timed run into the box and beat his marker to firmly head Tommy Oar's left-wing cross, but it was directed just outside the post.

Bolt also spent a minute of the first half on the ground in pain after being struck in the groin by the ball.

After his goals he was eventually substituted in the 75th minute.