Only three points separate them in Group G, although Al Abyad have a game in hand and will be looking to make amends.
The Gulf nation won both their opening games to start the qualifiers on a bright note. However, back-to-back losses to Thailand and Vietnam upset their momentum and they now find themselves second-from-bottom in the group.
Confidence in the camp is high again, however, after Jordan's 5-1 thrashing in last week's friendly.
Malaysia, who are ranked 80 places below the UAE, will be satisfied with their run so far. They have won thrice from five games, and will be aiming to progress into the third round.
United Arab Emirates vs Malaysia Head-To-Head
The UAE have won 10 of their previous 13 clashes with Malaysia, who have beaten them only twice before, the last coming way back in 1982.
When the sides met for the first leg of their qualifying fixture in 2019, the UAE secured a 2-1 comeback victory in Kuala Lumpur.
United Arab Emirates Form Guide (all competitions): L-L-D-W-W
Malaysia Form Guide (all competitions): L-L-W-W-L
United Arab Emirates vs Malaysia Team News
United Arab Emirates
Head coach Bert van Marwijk named an extended 34-man squad ahead of their friendly against Jordan, but it's now been whittled down to 24.
Key players including all-time top-scorer Ali Mabkhout, who netted a hat-trick in that game, as well as Ali Khasif, Walid Abbas and Majed Hassan have all been retained.
The Southeast Asian outfit have named a relatively young squad with nine players making 10 or less appearances so far, including three uncapped players.
Among them is Midtjylland's promising young defender Dion Cools, who'll be looking to make his mark on the international stage.
United Arab Emirates vs Malaysia Predicted XI
United Arab Emirates (4-4-2): Ali Khasif; Walid Abbas, Shahin Abdulrahman, Mahmoud Al Hammadi, Bandar Mohamed; Ali Salmin, Abdalla Ramadan, Khalil Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Fabio Lima; Khalfan Mubarak, Ali Mabkhout.
Malaysia (4-3-3): Khairulazhan Khalid; Syahmi Safari, Aidil Zafuan, Shahrul Saad, La'Vere Corbin-Ong; Brendan Gan, Azam Azih, Syamer Kutty; Safawi Rasid, Mohamadou Sumareh, Akhyar Rashid.
United Arab Emirates vs Malaysia Prediction
The UAE have already beaten Malaysia once and will be looking to complete the double. But the latter have improved since then, which gives them an edge in this game.
We're predicting a score draw following a pulsating clash.
Prediction: United Arab Emirates 2-2 Malaysia
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