Al Nasr go top after win over Al Shabab

Al Nasr go top after win over Al Shabab

Hollman and Khamis find the target in Dubai derby victory

Al Nasr’s Helal Saeed and Al Shabab’s vie for ball possession during the Arabian Gulf League match at the Al Maktoum Stadium in Dubai on Wednesday. — KT photo by Shihab

Dubai — Ten-man Al Shabab suffered their first Arabian Gulf League defeat when they went 0-2 down to hosts Al Nasr in the Dubai derby in R-4 of the championship at the Al Maktoum Stadium here on Wednesday night.

Al Nasr raised their tally to nine points at the top of Group-A ahead of Al Shabab on goals difference, though Al Nasr have played one match less than their opponents.

Al Shabab were reduced to ten players after Hassan Ebrahin was sent off one minute after the hour mark. Brett Hollman broke the deadlock in the 35th minute of the first half and Mahmoud Khamis slotted in the second goal with a long range shot in the 70th minute of the fast-paced clash.

The visitors started brightly and in the 4th minute Luvannor did well down the left to squeeze the ball through to Dawood Ali in the box, but young Al Nasr goalkeeper Abdualla Mohd Ismail made an excellent save with his legs to deny a certain goal. Ismail again blocked with his legs moments later to prevent Luvannor’s shot from breaking the deadlock.

Al Nasr threatened at the other end with Tariq Ahmed almost dispossessing Manei Mohamed right in front of goal, but both players ended up on the ground as the opportunity was lost. Just after half an hour Carlos Villanueva threaded a well-timed pass through to Edgar Bruno but again Ismail made the stop, this time rushing out of his goal to smother the chance.

Eventually in the 35th minute it was Al Nasr who found a way through. Mohammed Marzooq’s defensive header fell to Brett Holman, who thrashed home a clinical finish to make it 1-0.

Al Shabab were dealt another blow right on the hour mark as Ibrahim was shown a straight red card for a rash challenge on Ali Hussain, leaving the visiting side to play for half an hour with 10 men. Ten minutes later they found themselves further behind as Al Nasr made it 2-0 in stunning fashion; left-back Mahmoud Khamis launching one of his trademark spectacular free kicks from long range, which clipped the underside of the crossbar before bouncing into the back of the net in the 70th minute. In the 86th minute Ibrahima Toure looked certain to add a 3rd goal for the hosts but somehow put his shot wide after going clean through on goal, and Al Nasr settled for a 2-0 win.

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