Al Ain finally find the rub of the green

Published: Sat 23 Sep 2017, 10:19 PM

Last updated: Sun 24 Sep 2017, 12:25 AM

After bad luck had followed them for close to a month, Al Ain finally found the rub of the green in the picturesque hills of Hatta.
The Boss climbed the peak, so to say, with a stellar 3-0 win over Hatta in the second week of the Arabian Gulf League on Saturday night.
Swedish international Marcus Berg fired a brace on 16 and 24 minutes, while under-fire striker Douglas scored the third as the Garden City club got their campaign back on track at the Hatta Stadium.
Al Ain's first League win of the season nudged them momentarily to second in the table behind pace setters Al Wahda.
Hatta, meanwhile, are yet to score a point from two fixtures and find themselves rooted right at the bottom of the table. They had lost to Shabab Al Ahli Dubai 4-1 in the opening week.
Zoran Mamic's men have had a troubled period of sorts over the past month with them being held to a 2-2 draw by Hatta in the Arabia Gulf Cup and then losing 3-0 to Saudi Arabia's Al Hilal, which put them out of the AFC Champions League, at the quarterfinal stage.
And then, in their League opener, The Boss were held to a 2-2 stalemate by Al Wasl at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium.
But on Saturday night, everything finally fell into place, much to the relief of Mamic. His men aced this fixture and came away with a deserved win.
The Boss were up and running after Berg tapped home Douglas' header from close range after Japanese centre-back Tsukasa Shiotani had done the spadework, with a cross from the right.
Berg then added cushion to Al Ain's lead and swelled his tally to three League goals eight minutes later by heading Amer Abdulrahman's cross into the net.
Al Ain duly got the third after the break with Douglas slipping it past shot stopper Ibrahim Essa after a one-two with Berg.
A mouth-watering fixture awaits Al Ain next weekend when they take fierce rivals Shabab Al Ahli Dubai at home at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium.
Hatta, meanwhile, are away to Emirates.
james@khaleejtimes.com

GOALS AND CARDS
Hatta 0
(Yellow cards: Hamdan Qassim 45, Abdullah Almulla 85)
Al Ain 3
(Goals: Marcus Berg 16, 24, Douglas 59.
Yellow card: Mohamed Ahmed 53)
 
 

By James Jose

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