Valencia Leads Equador To Historic Win Over Qatar

Many supporters who had left the stadium at the interval did not return, leaving the ground around half empty for much of the second period.

The hosts of the 2022 Fifa World Cup got off to a disastrous start, being humiliated by Ecuador in Al Bayt.

Felix Sanchez’s players had been in camp for six months to prepare for the event and work on tactics, but a jittery and disorganized performance resulted in a Group A defeat.

With Africa Cup of Nations champions Senegal and three-time finalists the Netherlands on the way, Qatar’s game appeared to be the simplest on paper, but they completely outplayed them.

Enner Valencia’s close-range header was called out for offside by the video assistance referee in a tense start to the game, but the South Americans broke the stalemate shortly after.

Qatar’s erratic goalkeeper Saad Al Sheeb brought Valencia down in the box and the ex-West Ham forward stepped up to convert the spot-kick.

It got worse for the hosts as Valencia powered in another header before half-time to leave the Al Bayt Stadium silenced at the break.

Many supporters who had left the stadium at the interval did not return, leaving the ground around half empty for much of the second period.

It contributed to a flat atmosphere both off and on the pitch, with Romario Ibarra’s curling shot being pushed out by Al-Sheeb.