Qatar defeated Jordan 3-1 to win the 2023 AFC Asian Cup final at the Lusail Stadium on Saturday.
Akram Afif scored the one and only hat-trick of the tournament as the right-footed forward led his country to a remarkable victory.
Afif scored all three goals from the penalty spot, with the last coming in the 95th minute which sealed the deal for the home side.
Qatar became just the fifth team after South Korea (1956, 1960), Iran (1968, 1972), Saudi Arabia (1984, 1988), and Japan (2000, 2004) to win the tournament for two consecutive times.
On the other hand, playing in front of 86,492 spectators, Jordan appeared in their first Asian Cup final, which was inarguably the biggest game in their history.
From the kick-off, both teams showcased their skill and resilience, creating an electrifying atmosphere in the stadium. The match saw relentless attacks and determined defending from both sides.
Afif broke the deadlock with a penalty in the 22nd minute. Jordan had their best chance during the first half injury time when Mousa Al-Tamari attempted a first-time effort at goal but his shot was blocked by Mohammed Waad.
However, Jordan ultimately equalised in the second half when Yazan Al Naimat found the back of the net in the 67th minute, intensifying the competition for the cup.
The game reached a dramatic conclusion when Qatar earned another penalty in the 72nd minute, which Afif converted without any trouble.
Afif completed a hat trick with a third penalty in the 95th minute, which made him the tournament's top goal-scorer with eight goals.
Remember, Qatar replaced former Real Madrid manager Carlos Queiroz just a month prior to the Asian Cup with the Spaniard Tintin Marquez. The decision to change the manager just 30 days before the tournament was considered a massive gamble but it ultimately paid off.