Kalba hold Sharjah; Tagliabue nets brace as Al Wahda thrash Fujairah - GulfToday

Kalba hold Sharjah; Tagliabue nets brace as Al Wahda thrash Fujairah

Arabian-Gulf-League

Players of Sharjah and Ittihad Kalba in action during their Arabian Gulf League match on Friday.

Yaqoub Al Bloushi scored in both nets as Ittihad Kalba drew 1-1 with leaders Sharjah at Kalba Union Sports and Cultural Stadium in matchweek 22 of the Arabian Gulf League on Friday.

The league leaders nearly broke the deadlock just 13 minutes into the game, when Ryan Mendes released Al Hasan Saleh with a perfectly weighted through pass, however, the fullback’s left-footed strike went just wide off the target.

In the 25th minute, Sharjah were awarded a penalty kick after Welliton Soares was brought down inside the box by Balazs Dzsudzsak. Igor Coronado failed to convert from the spot as his low strike was brilliantly saved by Kalba’s goalkeeper Jamal Al Sarrah.

Ten minutes later, the Tigers responded when Omar Al Khadim advanced up the left flank and sent a well placed cross towards Tommy Reyes. The Colombian squared the ball towards Al Bloushi, who finished it from a close range with a powerful header, making it 1-0 into halftime.

Just six minutes after the restart, Al Bloushi turned from hero to villain. The defender left Al Sarrah helpless as he headed Coronado’s right footed in-swinging cross into the back of his own, leveling things up.

The King continued to push forward in order to snatch the full points, and in the 67th minute Coronado went up the left flank and sent the ball to Soares. The Brazilian squared it towards Mendes, whose right-footed shot skied over the bar.

This marked Sharjah’s second draw in a row as the King remain on top of the league table with 52 points, eight points clear of second-placed Shabab Al Ahli.

In another match, Sebastian Tagliabue netted a brace as Al Wahda thrashed Fujairah 5-0 at Al Nahyan Stadium.

Al Wahda controlled the early proceedings and were able to take the lead in the 16th minute, thanks to Khalid Abdullah’s own goal. Abdullah was trying to clear Khalil Al Hammadi’s cross but ended up slotting the ball into his own net.

Ten minutes later, Sebastian Tagliabue found Mohamed Almenhali’s through pass as the former went one-on-one with the keeper before tapping the ball home to make it 2-0 for the hosts.

After the restart, Abdulla Altamimi pulled off a fine save after being in a one-on-one situation with Tagliabue to keep the result at 2-0.

The third goal eventually came through Tahnoon Al Zaabi. Hammadi’s effort was initially denied by Altamimi but Al Zaabi tapped in the rebound to give his side a 3-0 lead in the 58th minute.

Hammadi continued to impress as he sent a defense-splitting pass to Ismaiel Matar inside the box and the latter lobbed the ball over the keeper to score a fourth goal, putting the win beyond any doubt.

To add insult to injury, the Clarets added a fifth goal with three minutes to go. Another through pass - this time from Chang Rim - found Tagliabue who burst into the box before sending a left-footed strike that nestled into the back of the net.

Al Wahda maintained their impressive performances as they remained in fifth place on 37 points, while Fujairah failed to capitalise on Emirates Club’s defeat on Wednesday, as they remained 13th on 15 points.

Meanwhile, three second-half goals helped Ajman beat Dibba 3-0 at Fujairah Stadium.

The game got off to a quiet start with very few chances being created on both ends of the field.

Ajman keeper Ali Alhosani denied Youssef Al Rawashdah in the 35th minute before Stanley Nka tried his luck six minutes later but his effort want wide  

One of the few chances in the first half fell to Diogo Acosta, however, Alhosani pulled a good save, as both sides remained deadlocked at 0-0 at halftime.

The second half was a completely different story as the guests netted three goals to seal the full points.

Twelve minutes into the second half, the guests went 1-0 up. Adel Hermach found the ball off Vander Vieira’s free-kick and tapped home to give his side the lead.