Palestine qualify for final stage of AFC World Cup qualifiers for first time

June 10 – A 0-0 draw with Lebanon in Qatar was enough to see Palestine through to the final stage of the AFC’s qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup for the first time.

Guaranteed second place in the group behind Australia, the draw also secured the Palestinians a fourth consecutive appearance at the AFC Asian Cup Saudi Arabia 2027.

Captain Mus’ab Al Battat said: “We are grateful to reach the final stage of the World Cup qualifiers for the first time and getting the ticket to the Asian Cup.

“Both are important achievements for Palestine football, especially with the situation we are facing,” continued Battat.

“I am happy because we made the Palestinian people happy with this qualification and we hope to continue making them proud. The entire squad is determined to continue giving our best.”

Palestine followed up their strong showing at the Asian Cup in January where they rode an emotional rollercoaster to qualify from the group stage, only to lose in the round of 16 to eventual winners Qatar 2-1.

The AFC has eight automatic qualifying slots for the 2026 World Cup, and a further intercontinental play-off slot.

The 18 qualifiers from the current group stage will now be seeded into three groups of six with the top two in each group qualifying directly for the 2026 World Cup.

The third and fourth teams from this stage will qualify for two further groups of three, with the winners of each group filling the final automatic AFC places at the 2026 World Cup.

With one match day left in the current group stage, Australia and Palestine are through alongside Qatar, Japan, South Korea, Oman, Iran, Uzbekistan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the UAE and Bahrain.

Contact the writer of this story at moc.l1719308152labto1719308152ofdlr1719308152owedi1719308152sni@n1719308152osloh1719308152cin.l1719308152uap1719308152

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