|Under 17 World Cup|
Oman 1 - Spain 2
Spain: Moyá; Jesús, Carlos García, Flaño, Tarantino; Melli, Iniesta (Diego León 73'); Guillermo (Pepe 46'), Sergio Torres (Senel 46'), Gavilán; Fernando Torres. 4-2-3-1. See our news archive for full squad.
Ato Bolden stadium, Couva, Trinidad & Tobago. Spain opened their under 17 World Cup campaign with a last minute victory against an opponent embroiled in scandal after three of their squad had been sent home before the competition began for being over the maximum age. It was an extraordinary match played on a hot and humid afternoon, with the Arabian players leaving the field time and time again on stretchers only to reappear seconds later apparently fit again.
Oman took the lead halfway through the first half through Al Hinai, taking a defence splitting pass from captain Ahmed Al Mukhaini and beating Mallorca's Moyá with a low shot. Juan Santiestaban's team came back though in the second half, with Atlético Madrid's Fernando Torres getting the equaliser after Betis midfielder Melli headed on Gavilán's corner. Both sides hit the woodwork, with Mukhaini hitting the bar and then substitute Diego León replying at the other end. By now several of the Omani youngsters were suffering from cramp, and Dominican Republic referee Richard Contreras eventually lost patience with the continual stoppages, showing Mukhaini the red card as he was lying on the stretcher after refusing to leave the field by himself.
With time running out Melli fired a header against the bar, the defence scrambling the ball away for a corner, but his prayers were answered a minute later as Gavilán's inswinger came over for him to flick it over Ajmi for the winner. Spain now go on to play Burkina Faso on Monday, with Argentina to come a couple of days later in the final group game. The first two go into the quarter finals.