Sharjah maintain top spot in AGL; Al Nasr beat Kalba 2-0 - GulfToday

Sharjah maintain top spot in AGL; Al Nasr beat Kalba 2-0


Players of Sharjah and Al Jazira in action during their Arabian Gulf League match on Thursday.

Sharjah cemented their position on top the league table after an impressive 2-0 victory against Al Jazira at Mohammad in Zayed Stadium in matchweek 7 of the Arabian Gulf League.

After the win, Sharjah stayed on the top of the league table with 19 points.

Sharjah started on the front foot, as superstar Igor Coronado received the ball inside the box, however, his right footed shot was denied by Ali Khaseif in the 10th minute.

The King continued to pile up pressure and around the 20-minute mark, Otabek Shukurov got at the end of a loose ball near the edge of the box after a poor clearance by Musallem Fayez. The Uzbek smashed it past Khaseif with a brilliant first time right footed volley.

In the final moments of the first half, Omar Juma advanced towards the box and squared the ball to Marcus Meloni, however, the number 22’s right footed strike was stopped by Khaseif, to end the first half as a 1-0 lead for Sharjah.

The Pride of Abu Dhabi were close to equalising the scoreline in the 51st minute. Omar Abdulrahman sent an in-swinging cross from the corner kick to Ali Mabkhout, whose flying header went just wide.

20 minutes before the fulltime whistle, the hosts wasted another chance to get back into the game, when Khalfan Mubarak sent a crossed freekick inside the box to Mourad Batna, whose header was saved cleverly by Adel Al Hosani.

Al Nasr extended their winning run to four games after defeating Kalba 2-0 . Kalba were first to threaten the Blues, when Yaseen Al Bakheet dribbled past Al Nasr’s backline to find himself in a one-on-one situation with Ahmed Shambeih, who blocked the Jordanian’s right footed effort in the 17th minute.

Al Nasr responded in the 22nd minute through Brandley Kuwas. The winger’s strike was denied by Jamal Al Sarrah, to keep the game deadlocked.

The Blues continued to push forward and around five minutes past the 30-minute mark. Kuwas went up the right flank and sent the ball towards Esteban Pavez, who slotted it calmly into the bottom corner, to make it 1-0 into halftime.

In the second half, Al Nasr carried on from where they left as they doubled their lead through Toze, who was left with a simple tap in from a close range to convert Alvaro Negredo’s defence-splitting ground cross in the 60th minute.

The hosts continued to control the gameplay and just three minutes later, they nearly scored the third of the night, as Pavez got at the end of a loose ball near the edge of the box, but his stunner cannoned off the cross bar.

Ricardo Valente scored to gift Hatta a hard-fought 1-0 victory against Fujairah at Fujairah Stadium on Friday. Hatta controlled the early stages of the game, as they maintained plenty of posession and pressed high up the pitch. In the 27th minute, the Tornado finally managed to translate their dominance, when Mahmood Qassim went up the right wing and squared the ball to Valente, who escaped his marker before smashing it into the top corner, to make it 1-0.

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Sharjah look to extend lead, Kalba face Al Nasr

Sharjah will look to consolidate their position on the top of the table at the Arabian Gulf League (AGL) with victory over Al Jazira on Thursday. Sharjah are in stellar form

Sharjah coach Abdulaziz Al Anbari is hopeful of carrying on the winning momentum against Al Jazira.

He said: “Preparations are good and we hope to make a good match with our brothers in Al Jazira. We will not be affected by the absence of the players. It is an important game and we hope to come out with a positive result.”

Anbari is wary of Al Jazira, who have shown a remarkable resurgence after a slow start.

“We expected from the beginning that Al Jazeera will go strength to strength from one game to another and this is what happened and we know that the game is difficult for both teams.”

Anbari confirmed that they are fortunate to have both Sharjah players Brazilian Igor Kornado and Al Jazira’s Omar Abdul Rahman in the upcoming match.

“We will do our best to produce a positive result. We are fortunate to have Igor and Amuri in this game. I am happy for the return of Omar to our league, He is an important player for Al Jazira and we hope Igor continues with his strong form.”

Sharjah striker Abdullah Ghanem also described Al Jazira match as an important game for both the teams.

“It is going to be an important match for both teams and we are ready for the match. Ali Mabkhout and Omar are special players and I am ready to face them with my colleagues in the match.”

In the other match of the day, a resurgent Kalba will look to extend their winning streak against Al Nasr after beating Bani Yas in the last game while Al Ain take on Bani Yas.

Kalba coach Jorge Dasilva said he was satisfied with the preparations for the match.

“We are raring to go and preparations are under way for the match. We are in perfect shape as there are no injuries and no absentees in the match. We got more training time this time around unlike last week. I expect it to be a tough game for both the sides. Al Nasr are at their best in the recent period. They have good players like Alvaro Negredo,” he added.

“We will try to thwart Al Nasr’s players from passing the ball to their attackers. I watched several games of Al Nasr and analysed their way of playing well. I have been talking to the guys about Al Nasr’s strategy of playing throughout the week.”

He also urged his players to put up a strong show against Al Nasr.

“I want my team to show and perform what is required of them. We have to learn a lesson from the second-half of the last game against Bani Yas.

“We must avoid the mistakes made by the players in the last game that would negatively affect the outcome. With the concentration, strong performance and fighting spirit on the pitch we will reap a positive result,” he concluded.

Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter

06 Nov 2019