Akram Afif pulled off an impressive hat-trick of penalty kicks, securing Qatar’s continued reign as AFC Asian Cup champions. The host team clinched their victory in a thrilling match against Jordan, emerging triumphant with a 3-1 win at Lusail Stadium.
In front of a massive crowd of 86,492, which included Qatar’s ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and FIFA president Gianni Infantino, Qatar faced off against Jordan, who were vying for their first major title.
Despite Jordan briefly leveling the score with a goal from Yazan Al-Naimat in the second half, Qatar’s Afif dashed their hopes by converting two more penalties, cementing his status as the tournament’s top scorer with eight goals.
Jordan 1-3 Qatar Highlights | AFC Asian Cup
The tension was palpable as Afif confidently stepped up to the penalty spot, securing Qatar’s lead in the 20th minute after winning the penalty himself. Despite Jordan’s efforts to rally in the second half, Qatar maintained their dominance, ultimately sealing the victory with Afif’s third penalty kick in stoppage time.
The celebratory atmosphere was electric as Afif was hailed by his teammates and awarded the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.
Qatar’s triumph was a testament to their skill and determination, leaving their fans in anticipation of future successes, as indicated by a banner unfurled in the stadium proclaiming “2023 loading.”