Players of Hatta and Khorfakkan in action during their AGL match.
Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter
Sharjah coach Abdulaziz Anbari ruled themselves out of the Arabian Gulf League (AGL) title race after their 3-1 victory against Ittihad Kalba on Sunday.
“Last year we got the trophy. This time around, I don’t reckon us in the title race. We are looking to finish in the top four,” said Anbari.
With the victory, not only did Sharjah end their four-game skid but also moved to the second spot in the standings, eight points adrift to leaders Shaba Al Ahli, who have 36 points from 15 games.
After a stellar start to the season that saw Sharjah stretching their unbeaten run till the ninth round in the league, the defending champions had to endure a miserable phase wherein they lost four consecutive games and drew one. As a result of which they slipped to the fourth from the top before their win against Kalba. Anbari also exuded confidence in the team and vowed to carry on their winning momentum from now on.
“We hope to continue the winning streak from here and play good and positive football. A positive result always helps in discovering some issues. Our line-up was not complete and we were playing with a makeshift team. After the winter transfers, the team is stable and we have some issues that we will finalise before the window closes,” he informed.
He was also all praise for his players like Shaheen and Caio but played down the rumours of signing any Omani players.
Meanwhile, Kalba coach said: “Sharjah are a good team despite the fact they were losing but we knew that they can bounce back at any time. They have quality players they can beat anyone. Unfortunately they came good against us, you can’t deny they are the champions and you can never take them lightly.”
Elsewhere, Hatta scored late to hold Khorfakkan to a 1-1 draw on Sunday. The game got off to a slow start as both teams failed to create any real threats and most of the gameplay was in the midfield, with both sides trying to dominate their position.
In the 45th minute, Abdullah Khamis found Neilton Meira with a crossed ball, that the Brazilian failed to control as Adel Sabeel reacted quickly to clear it to a corner kick. This was the most notable attack in the first half as it ended in a dull goalless draw.
Al Jazira defeated Hatta 2-0 while Shabab Al Ahli trounced Al Wahda 4-0 in matchweek 8 of the Arabian Gulf League on Wednesday. Earlier, Bani Yas holds Sharjah
Saeed Juma’s late strike secured a hard-fought 3-2 victory for Al Ain against Ittihad Kalba at Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium in the opening matchweek of the Arabian Gulf League season on Friday.
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.
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