Wasl wary of Jazira in Etisalat Cup

DUBAI — Al Wasl need to be wary of the threat posed by reigning UAE League champions Al Jazira in this Thursday’s Etisalat Cup encounter, according to new boss Diego Maradona.

By Alex Leach

Published: Tue 13 Sep 2011, 11:51 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 7:16 PM

Al Jazira won the top-flight title at a canter last season and also claimed the President’s Cup to achieve the much-prized domestic double.

Those successes underline the dominance Al Jazira enjoyed for the most part of the 2010/11 campaign, so it’s perhaps hardly surprising that Maradona and Co shall travel down to Abu Dhabi with a somewhat guarded approach in mind.

“We will be very careful on Thursday against a team we know a lot about in Al Jazira,” Maradona said.

“The players are ready and we’re already preparing for – and thinking about – the match against Al Jazira.

“They, of course, have the advantage in that they have been playing together for longer than us.

“But, at the same time, we have our tactics and tricks, so we can go and hurt them. “We’re not going to be totally defensive. We’re naturally going to take care because we know Al Jazira is a good team and then we will try to counter-attack and hurt them.”

Meanwhile, Maradona ran the rule of his players in a behind-closed-doors friendly on Monday after it apparently emerged that Al Jazira had sent scouts to their two previous pre-season encounters to covertly garner early information on team tactics.

“We are confident. We’re not in a rush, but the final line-up of the team will not be known yet,” he added.

“We will keep on playing. We will have another training session where no person from Al Jazira will be allowed to enter because we have found out that in the two friendly matches that we played, there were people from Al Jazira watching these matches.

“I’m going to have closed doors in the club, so we will not allow any fan, manager or person from Al Jazira to go inside our club and they will not know how we’re going to play them on Thursday in Abu Dhabi.”


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