Eric Gerets cautions Al Jazira not to stumble again

Eric Gerets cautions Al Jazira not to stumble again

The Spiders play Al Fujairah on Sunday, Emirates on Thursday



By James Jose (senior Reporter)

Published: Sun 8 Feb 2015, 12:11 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 10:45 PM

Mirko Vocinic of Al Jazira (left) and Ahmed Ibrahim of Ajman vie for the ball during their Arabian Gulf League, match at Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium. — KT file

Mirko Vocinic of Al Jazira (left) and Ahmed Ibrahim of Ajman vie for the ball during their Arabian Gulf League, match at Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium. — KT file

Abu Dhabi: Al Jazira are on the road over the next two rounds and coach Eric Gerets said it was vital to return with the six points if they are to keep their position at the top.

Al Jazira are away to Al Fujairah on Sunday night and play Emirates on Thursday night. The Spiders were in danger of relinquishing the top spot last time out against Ajman before a stern half-time talk by Gerets saw Mirko Vucinic fire a brace and Manuel Lanzini score one to take them home.

Gerets had told his players to wake up and fight for every ball and the Belgian will be asking more of the same on Sunday. The fact, that they dropped two points to Al Fujairah at home, is not lost on Gerets.

“We will play two consecutive away matches during the next week and if we want to stay on top and keep fighting for the title, then we have to come back with the six points from these two matches against Al Fujairah and Emirates. In the first half of the league, we lost two points to Al Fujairah and we can’t allow this stumble to happen again this time. We have to improve and play better than we did against Ajman the last time because the next match will be very difficult and complicated,” Gerets said.

And Gerets asked his men to be wary of Al Fujairah, who come into the game on the back of a win over Emirates. “In the first round, they (Al Fujairah) struggled a lot and their position in the league table reflects that clearly. They had to start the second round with more power and aggressiveness and they did so when they beat Emirates last week. And that victory will give them a huge moral boost to play strongly and aggressively against us to gain more points and start climbing the table,” said the Belgian.

Al Jazira have a hectic schedule where they will also travel to Uzbekistan for the AFC Champions League play-offs. Meanwhile, Jucilei Da Silva will be back for Al Jazira after serving a suspension, but they will miss Ahmed Rabeya Al Ghilani who is suspended.

Second-placed Al Ain are away to Al Wasl at the Zabeel Stadium on Monday and will look to build on their 2-1 win over Al Shabab. Al Wasl, meanwhile, will be looking to back back from a shock 3-1 loss to Al Dhafrah. Third-placed Al Wahda welcome Emirates to the Al Nahyan Stadium on Sunday night, while Bani Yas are at home to Ittihad Kalba on the same night.

james@khaleejtimes.com

 


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