April 03, 2009

Saudi Arabia boss Jose Peseiro has had an immediate effect on the nation's dreams of a fifth successive World Cup.

The Portuguese tactician took over the team in February as the team was in danger of slipping out of contention.

But two come-from-behind wins in the space of four days has put Saudi Arabia right back on the road to South Africa.

Two come-from behind wins in Iran and at home to UAE have put Saudi Arabia level on points with second place North Korea. South Korea lead the group with a point more from a game less.

"It will be difficult but we aim to win all our games and if we do that, we will go through automatically," Peseiro told Reuters.

"This is football, we have seen that anything can happen, so why can't we do this?

"We have the ability, the motivation, the confidence and a little luck too," added Peseiro.

More impressive is that Saudi Arabia have collected the six points without Yasser Al Qahtani. Peseiro threw the 2007 Asian Player of the Year off the team after he missed training.

"Al-Qahtani is a great player but he didn't show up for training or answer my phone calls," Peseiro said.

"I cannot accept this from any of my team. We have 26 players and he will have to earn his place." -- Goal.com

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