HANOI (AFP) - Uruguayan-born striker Sebastian Quintana Soria rescued Qatar from the jaws of defeat as they battled back for a 1-1 draw against unfancied co-hosts Vietnam here Thursday.
Soria, whose 88th-minute free kick secured a 1-1 draw against defending champions Japan in their Group B opener, struck late again with a 79th-minute header that cancelled out an early strike by Vietnam forward Phan Thanh Binh.
The result still left Vietnam, who upset United Arab Emirates when they returned to the continental cup finals for the first time in 47 years, at the top of the group on four points.
Asian Games gold medallists Qatar have two points with Japan on one. Japan and the UAE face each other on Friday.
"I am satisfied with how our team played," Qatar coach Dzemaludin Musovic said. "Both teams tried to play a good quality of football.
"The situation in the whole group has become open, Everything is possible," added the Bosnian, who was assistant to Japan coach Ivica Osim when they led the former Yugoslavia to the 1990 World Cup quarter-finals.
Vietnam coach Alfred Riedl said the result was "lucky."
"Qatar were especially strong in the last 20-25 minutes as they created a lot of chances. We had some difficult situations," said the Austrian, now in his third stint as Vietnam coach since 1998.
"We'll try to get points from Japan. Otherwise we should't be here," Riedl added. "We will not make it easy for Japan."
Phan's goal came in the 32nd minute when he caught the ball on a counter-attack in midfield and drilled a 20-metre shot toward the goal.
In a comical schoolboy error, Qatar goalkeeper Mohamed Saqr fumbled the ball and it squirmed underneath him and dribbled over the line.
Qatar controlled the game early on with Soria the danger man, causing all sorts of problems for goalkeeper Phung Van Nhien.
But Vietnam slowly picked up their pace with sporadic attacks as the full-house crowd got behind their team.
It was Soria though who came closest to drawing first blood in the 21st minute when his shot through two defenders was gathered by Phung, before Panh broke the deadlock.
The game heated up in the second half as the partisan sellout crowd of 40,000 chanted "Vietnam, Vietnam" and roared on their team with Mexican waves at the My Dinh National Stadium, sensing another shock victory.
They held their breath in astonishment when Qatar launched a blistering attack in the 62nd minute with Hassan Magid banging the ball off the far post and Soria pushing the rebound wide.
But Soria always looked dangerous and headed in a rebound off substitute Ali Yahya's shot in the 79th minute.
Qatar squandered a golden chance to win the game four minutes later when Yahya rattled the bar and headed the rebound onto the top of the net.
|15||Talal Al Bloushi||22'|
|Coach: D. Mušović|
for Waleed Jassem 58'
for Adel Lamy 73'
for Majed Mohammed 78'
for Vu Nhu Thanh 55'
for Phan Van Tai Em 82'
for Phan Thanh Binh 90+4'
|Martinez to look at youth again|
|Hughes holds out Assaidi hope|
|Maradona critical of Messi award|
|Maicon wants Roma stay|
|FIFA World Cup: Team of the tournament|
|Man United agree record kit deal with Adidas|
|Rudy ruptures ankle ligaments|
|Maguire hints at Hull move|
|Feyenoord bring in Boulahrouz|
|Ibe hoping to follow Sterling footsteps|
|Maicon defends Scolari|
|Van Gaal calls for United to match Netherlands spirit|
|Guardiola congratulates Germany´s Bayern contingent|
|Pressure will not faze Cabella|
|Cuenca: Depor move an easy decision|
|Richardson keen on Roy reunion|
|Scotland to host England for November friendly|
|Kouyate enjoying West Ham life|
|Germany basks in World Cup glory|
|Seifert hails Bundesliga quality|
|Osman confident of Everton improvement|
|Kroos set for Real switch|
|MLS Preview: Sporting KC eye top spot, Red Bulls visit Union|
|Seattle Sounders 2 Portland Timbers 0: Conference leaders leave it late|
|2014 FIFA World Cup: Tweets of the tournament|
|2014 FIFA World Cup: Best goals|
|2014 FIFA World Cup: Tournament in numbers|
|2014 FIFA World Cup: To Russia with love?|
|2014 FIFA World Cup: Gotze glory rounds off captivating spectacle|
|World Cup win is unbelievable, says Gotze|
|Downing talks up Valencia arrival|
|Kramer: ´I can´t remember very much´|
|Peru Primera Division Review: Inti Gas go top, Universitario lose|
|Klose to decide on Germany future|
|Ecuador Primera A Review: Emelec poised for championship|
|Devastated Messi: Golden Ball not important|
|Messi comparison inspired Gotze, says Low|
|Hummels: I´m on another planet|
|Messi named player of the tournament|
|Sabella proud of players, defends Messi|
|Adebayor contracts malaria, out of US tour|
|Lahm ecstatic after World Cup triumph|
|Newcastle complete Cabella deal|
|Mascherano endures World Cup pain|
|2014 FIFA World Cup Final: Player Ratings|
|2014 FIFA World Cup Final: Where the final was won and lost|
|2014 FIFA World Cup Final: New Germany ready to dominate|
|2014 FIFA World Cup Final: Germany 1 Argentina 0 (after extra time)|
|BREAKING NEWS: Germany win World Cup|
|Rousseff thanks Brazil despite World Cup woe|
|Fred ´finished´ with Brazil|
|Manchester City lose to Dundee in pre-season opener|
|Rami keen to restore Milan glories|
|Thai Premier League Review: Muang Thong win again, BEC Tero Sasana pay penalty|
|In-demand Lovren joins Southampton on tour|
|Adidas to stick with Suarez|
|Cesar accepts Brazil career all but over|
|Rodriguez signs new Fiorentina deal|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Celtic begin campaign, Steaua in Norway|
|K.League Review: Steelers maintain lead as top four all win|
|Suso eager for Liverpool stay|
|McDonald allays West Ham injury fears|
|Basanta urges Argentina to enjoy the moment|
|Schweinsteiger: Germany have big-match experience|
|Vidal relaxed over future|
|Bartomeu drooling over Barca strikeforce|
|Gerrard should remain captain, says Beckham|
|Cafu throws support behind Scolari|
|Sabella warns Argentina|
|MLS Review: Henry, Defoe star, as late goals rain down|
|Klinsmann: Germany are favourites|
|Robben rejects Van Gaal´s United proposal|
|Blind hopes Dutch youngsters stick together|
|Thiago Silva frustrated by failure|
|Adrian leaves Atletico for Porto|
|Van Gaal proud after Dutch win|
|Scolari leaving future up to CBF|
|Mixed emotions for Robben|
|FIFA World Cup: Brazil 0 Netherlands 3|
|Sabella remains unsure of Di Maria fitness|
|Abdennour pleased with friendly workout|
|Halilhodzic to take charge at Trabzonspor|
|Fenerbahce delighted to finally sign Diego|
|Low and Germany ready for finale|
|Lyon agree Rose deal|
|Neymar´s World Cup delights Bartomeu|
|De Laurentiis: Higuain going nowhere|
|Beckham lauds ´amazing´ Messi|
|PSG beat Videoton in seven-goal thriller|
|Horta makes Malaga switch|
|Southampton seal deal for Pelle|
|Barcelona ´convinced´ of reduction in Suarez ban|
|West Ham held by League Two Stevenage|
|Bianchi makes move to England|
|West Ham must be more clinical, says Allardyce|
|Germany experience will count - Lehmann|
|Berahino and Dorrans strike in Albion win|
|Ince settling quickly at Hull|
|Swansea in talks with Napoli over Michu|
|Dodo eyes Champions League with Inter|
|FIFA World Cup Preview: Germany v Argentina|
|Huddlestone out to hit the ground running|
|Pogba not bound for Chelsea - agent|
|Barry feeling fresh with Everton|
|Arteta plays down transfer talk|
|PSV complete De Jong deal|
|Colback excited for busy pre-season|
|Milan and Orlando in talks over Robinho|
|West Brom bring in Pocognoli|
|Maradona: Messi will define World Cup final|
|Rami seals Milan move|
|Kuyt eager to secure third place|
|Rodriguez talks up Real Madrid move|
|Bebe welcomes Benfica link|
|Koeman admits unsettled Lovren could leave|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Argentina face old foes Germany with Brazil´s party in tatters|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Messi aims to cement legacy|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Sabella on the brink of greatness|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Muller seeks to augment outstanding finals record|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Low´s hard work pays off|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: The coaches to have tasted glory|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: The five most iconic finals|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: The five most iconic finals|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Germany´s route to the final|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Brazil 2014 produces moments to remember|
|SJ Earthquakes 1 DC United 2: Johnson, Silva score as Eastern Conference leaders extend advantage|
|Otamendi unfazed by price tag|
|Sam targeting top three with Schalke|
|Rodriguez out for revenge|
|Bruno Alves could leave Fenerbahce|
|Thiago Silva endured sleepless nights|
|Final on enemy soil ´special´, says Zabaleta|
|Arteta: Sanchez signing highlights Arsenal´s ambition|
|Mertesacker demands repeat performance|
|Scolari gets federation backing|
|Balotelli poses with shotgun|
|Lizarazu lauds Argentina´s craftiness|