Al Ahli too strong for Ittihad Kalba

Al Ahli host Tractorazy Tabriz at home in a must win encounter while looking forward for their group leaders to do them a favour and beat Nasaf if they are to proceed to the knockout stage of the AFC Champions League.



By Hisham Al Gizouli (chief Reporter)

Published: Mon 27 Apr 2015, 11:18 AM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 10:44 PM

Dubai — Al Ahli cruised to a morale-boosting 3-0 away victory over relegated Ittihad Kalba in the 24th round of the Arabian Gulf League ahead of their crucial AFC Champions League tie on May 5, at the Kalba Stadium on Sunday.

Al Ahli host Tractorazy Tabriz at home in a must win encounter while looking forward for their group leaders to do them a favour and beat Nasaf if they are to proceed to the knockout stage of the AFC Champions League.

Meanwhile, goals from Abdulaziz Sanqour, Everton Ribeiro and a Habib Al Fardan penalty lift the Red Knights up to fith place with 37 points, pending other results this round, whilst already-relegated Kalba remain bottom on 10 points.

“This win is very crucial for our AFC Champions’ League campaign after the 2-1 sad defeat at the hands of Saudi Arabia’s Al Ahli in Jeddah last week,” said Al Ahli midfielder Habib Fardan in a post-match Press conference.

“We will also meet Ittihad Kalba in the R-16 of the President Cup,” he added.

After the slow start, Al Ahli’s left winger Abdul Aziz Sanqoor opened the scoring for the defending champions with a long range shot that hit the hands of Kalba’s keeper Mohamed Al Tamimi en route to the open net to make it 1-0 for the visitors in the 19th minute of the first half.

“Our opponents have scored from an easy ball,” said Kalba’s player Ali Mahmoud who blamed their keeper for the early goal. Three minutes into the second half Al Ahli extended their lead as Everton Ribeiro found the net to make it 2-0, and by the 61st minute it was 3-0 as Habib Al Fardan squeezed a penalty kick under the body of Mohamed Al Tamimi after the same player had seen his effort handled in the area.

However, it was a good opportunity for Al Ahli Romanian coach Cosmin to try new players from the Olympic squad like Saeed Jassem and try to bring back his two midfielders Habib Fardan and Nawaf Mubarak to the first eleven. This is in addition to the redeployment of some players including Ossama Assaidi to perform new tasks in the defensive part of play.

“We are confident to make it in the quarterfinals of the AFC Champions League and however our chances are slim, we will go for them. The most important thing is to do our part and wait for the results of the other matches,” said Al Ahli keeper Ahmed Dida. 


More news from Local Sports