Shabab set to face stiff Jazira test

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Shabab set to face stiff Jazira test

Al Shabab’s lead will be tested as the unbeaten Dubai-side face their toughest task when they host the Abu Dhabi giants Al Jazira in the opener of the third round of the Arabian Gulf League at their stronghold Maktoum bin Rashid Stadium here on Thursday.

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Published: Thu 26 Sep 2013, 11:07 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 9:11 AM

Al Jazira players undergo a training session ahead of their AGLmatch. — Supplied photo

The match is set to kickoff at 5.25pm. Later in the evening, Ajman host Sharjah at the Rashid bin Saeed Stadium while Al Nasr entertain Al Ahli in the Dubai derby with both games starting at 8.30pm. Al Nasr’s clash would be the first match of the competition to be telecasted on the Abu Dhabi pay channel.

Having won their first two starts, Al Shabab’s forward Adeilson has also topped the scorers’ table after the UAE debutant has struck three of the five goals which were scored by his side.

Al Jazira have slipped to the middle of the standings following their painful 2-3 home defeat at the hands of Al Wasl last weekend, after they were reduced to nine players early in the game. And as a result, both Hyungmin Shin and Abdullah Mousa will skip Dubai’s trip besides Paraguayan striker Nelson Valdez who picked up an injury in the process.

In Dubai, a big crowd is expected to pack Al Maktoum Stadium in the first derby of the competition featuring traditional rivals of the emirate particularly; the organisers have decided show the match on the pay channel alone.

Al Ahli have got to a perfect start and settled second behind Al Shabab on goals difference. And considering they have already beat UAE’s football powerhouse Al Ain to claim the first trophy of the season, the faithful fans will undoubtedly make their way down to the venue to cheer the players in order to keep on this success and maintain their unbeaten run.

In the meantime, Al Nasr’s frustrated supporters are still hopeful that the team will return to the winning ways in the most challenging confrontation which weighs in their eyes the trophy itself.

The third clash of the opening day of round three will also sees Sharjah crossing the road to Al Nuaimia in Ajman to lineup against hosts Ajman at the Rashid bin Saeed Stadium. Fighting Ajman are currently winless after their first two games, while Sharjah have ironically won their away start before being narrowly 1-2 beaten at home by Al Shabab.

Friday’s clashes feature Dubai against Bani Yas at the Al Aweer Stadium and Al Dhafra facing holders Al Ain at the Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan Stadium in Al Dhafra.

In the later encounters, promoted Emirates face Al Wahda at the Al Nahyan Stadium in Abu Dhabi and Al Shaab host Al Wasl to the Khaled bin Mohamed Stadium in Sharjah.

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