On 23 of June, Lebanon will face Djibouti for the first time ever in the 2021 Arab Cup qualifiers. In our 81-year history, Lebanon has faced 60 opponents in 329 games.
In the 60 first encounters, we won 27 times, lost 20 and drew 13. In those 60 matches, we faced 11 African opponents. Lebanon was victorious only once, against Somalia in 2006. Half of the other 10 matches ended in a loss.
In addition to Somalia, the Cedars also faced Mauritania for the first time, in the 2009 Arab Nations Cup qualifiers in 2006. Djibouti will be our only debut opponents in an Arab Nations Cup qualifiers other than the two national teams mentioned earlier.
We faced three other national team for the first time during an Arab Nations Cup and they are Iraq (1964, 0-1 loss), Bahrain (1966, 6-1 win) and Yemen (2002, 4-2 win).
In 2017, we faced our 60th opponent in history, in a 2-1 away win against Malaysia. Before that, we scored in 6 successive debuts. During our history, we had 2 similar streaks in debut matches, each of them ending after the 8th game.
Other than the prize money, the match against Djibouti will be a historic encounter. Hopefully, we can come back from Doha with a win!