Al Nasr and Bani Yas post facile wins; 2nd-placed Al Jazira look to cut deficit - GulfToday

Al Nasr and Bani Yas post facile wins; 2nd-placed Al Jazira look to cut deficit

Arabian Gulf League

Al Nasr and Khorfakkan players in action during their AGL match on Thursday.

Second-half goals handed Al Nasr a 2-1 win over Khorfakkan at Al Maktoum Stadium in matchweek 15 of the Arabian Gulf League (AGL) held under the slogan “Human Fraternity” in celebration of the Human Fraternity Festival.

Both sides created few real goalscoring chances in the early phases of the game, as the first half ended goalless.

It wasn’t until the 72nd minute when Al Nasr Portuguese midfielder Toze scored the opening goal after a powerful shot outside the box.

Khorfakkan refused to give up and netted a late equalizer through Raphael Guimaraes who fired a powerful freekick from outside the box in the 86th minute.

As the game seemed to be headed for a draw, Algerian midfielder Mehdi Abeid netted the winning goal in the 93rd minute to secure three valuable points for his team.

After a string of poor results, the Blues, bounced back and raised their tally to 27 points, two behind third-placed Bani Yas who defeated Fujairah 2-1 at home. Khorfakkan remained in the eleventh place with 15 points.

Meanwhile, Bani Yas came from behind to earn a 2-1 victory over Fujairah on Thursday night at Bani Yas Stadium .

The guests got off to a quick start as Douglas Coutinho opened the scoring for Fujairah after 13 minutes only, when he fired a powerful shot from outside the box that left Bani Yas keeper helpless.

Bani Yas looked more dangerous in the second half and needed only three minutes to net the equalizer through Hasan Almuharrami who headed the ball home off a corner kick.

The Sky Blues then took the lead, thanks to Joao Pedro’s inch-perfect header in the 78th minute.

After losing to Al Wasl in matchweek 14, Bani Yas returned to winning ways to raise their tally to 29 points in third place, and Fujairah remained in the 13th place with seven points.

Earlier, Al Jazira coach Marcel Keizer ruled out any absentees due to injury and as he is optimistic of having a full-strength squad at his disposal for their Arabians Gulf League (AGL) 15th round match against Al Dhafra on Friday.

Khalifa Al Hammadi will miss the game as he is serving a suspension, but Salim Rashid will join the squad with the new signing Brandley Kuwas and Mohamed Al Attas, who recovered fully from his muscle injury.

“Everyone is fit and ready for this tough game, except Khalifa Al Hammadi, who got a red card in the dying moments of the last game against Al Nasr,” said Keizer.

“We need everyone because it is going to be a difficult game. Al Dhafra have always been a strong opponents.

“But we know what to expect against them and we will be ready for the match. In the President’s Cup game, we missed a lot of chances, so we need to be more focused now and capitalize on any chance we may create to score and end the match with the three points in our kitty,” Keizer added.

“They are good team and they are bound to give us a good fight, so we need to show them the due respect and we have to be at our best,” he stressed.

Al Jazira are second in the standing with 30 points where as Al Dhafra have shown some resurgence and are at the 10th spot, 14 points adrift of their opponents.

“Kuwas has been training well since the beginning of the week, but we are still not sure about including him in the starting line-up against Al Dhafra or not.

“have known him very well since his days in the Netherlands and also from his spell at Al Nasr, he can play at both sides but he prefers to be on the right, and I am sure he will add a great value to the team during the remaining of this season,” apprised the coach.

Meanwhile, Al Dhafra coach Kwid informed that there is great improvement in terms of availability of the players as compared to their last game against Ajman.

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