Bani Yas assistant coach Ahmed Al Hammadi speaks during a press conference ahead of their match against Al Dhafra.
Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter
Bani Yas will seek the first elusive victory of the season when they take on Al Dhafra in the fourth round match of the Adnoc Pro League on Thursday.
Bani Yas, who finished second behind champions Al Jazira last season, -- their best finish in the history of the club – are yet to taste success in this season.
They are currently at the 12th spot in the 14-team league with just one point following two losses and one victory. Bani Yas assistant coach Ahmed Al Hammadi described the match against Al Dhafra as a very important one.
“It is an important match, we respect Al Dhafra. They have shown a remarkable development in the recent years and are a very strong side, who can surprise any team on a given day. Moreover, we are playing away from the home ground, that makes this game more difficult,” said Hammadi.
He also stressed the importance of registering the first win, which has eluded them so far after a stellar previous season.
“We are confident. We have played the big matches against very strong teams. They are one of the best teams in the league and top contenders for the title. We were unlucky in the last match but we are confident of winning the next game,” he added.
Bani Yas were defeated by Al Wasl in their season opener before being held to a 1-1 draw against Al Wahda and tasting a defeat against Al Ain in the second and third rounds respectively.
He also ruled out the Argentina's Nicolas Gimenez for the Al Dhafra match.
“The team is ready for the challenge and all the palyers are raring to go except Giemnez, who got a red card in the AL Ain match. But we have found an appropriate replacement for him. Bani Yas new signing of Sweden Isaac Thelin said he has gelled well with his new tram-mates.
“I am very excited to be here. The atmosphere in the team is very positive I am looking forward to play against Al Dhafra,” said Thelin.
"In the first match, we played a good first half, but we were unable to score. We lost a lot of opportunities to score, and we will try to take advantage of the chances in the upcoming matches,” he added.
He also praised the standard of the football in the UAE and said he knew in advance about the league before coming here.
"I have many friends who have played in the UAE league and one of them is Marcus Berg, the former Al Ain player, and I have good impressions of football here,” he apprised.
Meanwhile, Al Nasr will look to bounce back against Khorfakkan in losing their previous match against Al Jazira. The defending champions had beaten Al Nasr 2-1.
“We are looking to put up a strong performance against Khorfakkan and rectify the mistakes that we committed against Al Jazira,” said Al Nasr coach Ramon Diaz.
“Our preparations for the Khorfakkan match are going as usual. We are looking to address the issues due to which we lost the last game.
“Since the team did not play well as a unit in that match. We have to try and put up a better performance in all the departments of the game.
“We were not convincing on the field and I will not hold only defence responsible for the loss. I apologise to the fans that we disappointed them.
“But I assure that we will bounce back as the league is still in the early stage and there is lot to play for. It is just the fourth round and we should be patient,” he added.
Al Nasr are on the eighth spot with just three points with loses and on win form their three matches so far.
"Mendez is still suffering from a health problem, as well as the fatigue and exhaustion he suffered during his international participation with his country, and he will not be able to participate in the Khorfakkan match, as well as Ahmed Shambeh, who has not yet recovered from injury," he informed.
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