Iraqi soccer team wins 1st home game in 7 years
By YAHYA BARZANJI
IRBIL, Iraq (AP) — Iraq played its first home soccer game since 2002, defeating Palestine 3-0 in a match that was as much about the nation's struggle for stability as it was about sports.
A sellout crowd of about 25,000 attended the exhibition game at Fransou Hariri Stadium, many waving Iraq and Palestine flags and chanting "Iraq, Iraq."
Some fans sat on the roofs of nearby buildings to catch a glimpse of the game in the capital of a Kurd-ruled region that was safer than many other parts of the country.
Palestine planned to fly to Baghdad for a second game Monday despite a deadly wave of bombings in the capital Thursday.