By Michael Pavitt

Palestine fans celebrate their first Asian Cup goal but their match ended in a 5-1 defeat ©Getty ImagesHamza Al Dardour became only the fourth player in Asian Cup history to score four goals in a match as Palestine's historic debut came to an end, while Japan are on the verge of the quarter-finals after a 1-0 victory over Iraq in an extraordinary match for Keisuke Honda.

Both Jordan and Palestine were hoping to keep their hopes of qualification alive in Melbourne, following opening match defeats in Group D, and the match started in positive fashion for Palestine as Hisham Salhi's long-range effort was forced onto the crossbar by Jordan goalkeeper Amer Shafi.

Jordan were able to grow into the first half and took the lead thanks to a moment of magic by Yousef Ahmad, as he cut onto his right foot from the edge of the area, before bending the ball into the top corner, leaving Ramzi Saleh helpless in the Palestine goal.

Jordan doubled their lead moments later, as Al Dardour claimed his first of the match, tapping in at the far post, after Abdallah Deeb had unselfishly squared across the face of goal.

Palestine, beaten 4-0 by Japan in the opening match of the tournament, would have been hoping to get to half time without falling further behind, but Al Dardour effectively put the game out of reach in stoppage time, as he showed his poaching instincts, attacking the near post to turn in a cross with the last kick of the half.

The second half began with Palestine pushing forward, in an attempt to get back into the contest, however in committing numbers forward they were found open on the counter attack.

Al Dardour, brimming with confidence after his first half strikes, gathered the ball on the halfway line and drove at the sparse Palestine defence, brushing off challenges and finishing his run in style, slotting calmly into the far corner.

Five minutes later Al Dardour put his name onto an elite list of Asian Cup goalscorers, taking advantage of a dispirited Palestine defence, to fire Jordan into a five-goal lead from another cross.

The influential Keisuke Honda gives Japan the lead from the penalty spot ©Getty ImagesThe influential Keisuke Honda gives Japan the lead from the penalty spot ©Getty Images

Palestine did end the match on a positive note, with Hbaisha scoring their first goal in Asian Cup history, claiming a consolation goal in a 5-1 defeat.

Meanwhile the top of the table clash between Iraq and Japan, saw Keisuke Honda in the thick of the action, as his struck the woodwork on three occasions and converted a first half penalty to give Japan maximum points from their two matches.

Honda first headed against the post after an excellent cross, with Iraq's goalkeeper narrowing the angle well, but he was able to give his team the lead moments later from the penalty spot sending the goalkeeper the wrong way, after being fouled.

Honda's all action display continued in the second half, hammering a long range strike against the bar which showed his class, which made his miss after the hour mark all the more astonishing.

Substitute Hiroshi Kioytake, squared the ball across the Iraq goalmouth, to be met by the unmarked Honda, who inexplicably struck the base of the post, with the goal left gaping.

His blushes were spared as Japan held on to claim the three points, which maintains their position at the top of the group.

They will seal qualification with a point in their final match clash against Jordan, while Iraq will hope to beat Palestine in their bid for a quarter-final berth.

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