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Iraqi football fans celebrate historic Olympic battle with Brazil Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Iraqi football fans celebrate historic Olympic battle with Brazil

The result leaves Iraq tied at second place in Group A [Twitter]

Date of publication: 8 August, 2016

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Iraqi football fans are revelling in their Olympic team's 'historic' goalless draw with host nation Brazil on Sunday.

Iraqi football fans are celebrating their Olympic team's "historic" 0-0 draw against Brazil in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday.

Footballing minnows Iraq held host team Brazil to a goalless draw in their second match at the 2016 Rio Olympics, to the joy of their fans in the war-torn nation.

The impatient home crowd of more than 60,000 jeered the Brazilian team for a lacklustre performance.

"It's a historic day for Iraq to be able to draw against Brazil at its home. It's a great achievement for Iraqi football," said Iraq coach Abdel Ghani al-Ghazali.

The Iraqi players rejoiced on the field after the draw. Brazilian fans applauded the team and broke out into chants of "Iraq, Iraq".

The result leaves Iraq tied at second place in Group A. They will need to defeat South Africa on Thursday to advance to the next round.

Ahmed al-Dawoodi, the admin of Facebook fan group Iraqi Football Team, told The New Arab he was ecstatic over the shock result.

"I stayed up late into the night to watch the game. My heart was beating so fast I couldn't even post on social media," Dawoodi said.

"When I saw the players passionately singing the national anthem I knew it was going to be a tough game for the home team. I think we should have won at least 1-0."

The Arabic-language hashtag #RioSpeaksIraqi has recently gained traction on Twitter shortly after the nil-all draw.

Translation: "Whatever the final score, we will stand by our team. Your presence in Brazil is an achievement in itself.

     
      [Click to enlarge]

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