Al Ain, Bani Yas in race for final spot

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Al Ain, Bani Yas in race for final spot
Bani Yas will be hoping to upset Al Ain.

Abu Dhabi - The Boss will look to learn from their AFC Champions League Round 16 mistakes

By Ashwani Kumar

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Published: Fri 20 May 2016, 9:55 PM

Last updated: Sat 21 May 2016, 1:03 AM

Al Ain and Bani Yas will clash in the President's Cup semis at the Al Jazira's Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium on Saturday night.
Al Ain the 'Boss' - playing their second match inside four days - will look to learn from their AFC Champions League Round 16 mistakes and convert more of their chances into results. Manager Zlatko Dalic's offensive strategy worked well against Iranian team Zobahan. However, the freak goal that resulted in an away point will play in the minds of the players.
It's time for Al Ain playmaker Omar Abdulrahman, winger Danilo Asprilla and Dyanfres Douglas to see the Garden City through to the finals.
Converting good sessions of play into goals has been Al Ain's undoing. The Garden City team are missing the finishing touches.
Bani Yas, on the other hand, will hope that injured Algerian forward Ishak Belfodil and goalkeeper Adel Fadak will be fit for the important clash.
"Belfodil didn't train on Thursday. We will also miss the services of Abdulsalam Mohammed as he is out after receiving a red card," Bani Yas manager Abdullah Mesfer said at a Press conference.
On the advantage of playing a tired Al Ain, he said: "They are a big team and their AFC Champions League participation will not affect their performance. Al Ain are used to playing like this every season. Also, they have quality players."
According to Mesfer, Bani Yas are prepared for extra-time and the lottery too.
"Both the teams know each other very well. The most important thing is reaching the final whether in 90 minutes of play, through extra-time goal or penalties." Mesfer's sheer confidence is a result of the quarters win over Emirates in penalties.
But Mesfer has a word of caution for his players. "Be alert and play seriously throughout the match."
The manager knows too well what Omar Abdulrahman can do with little space in front of goal.
On the preparations, Bani Yas captain Yousef Jaber said: "This match is different as you are not looking to get points or improve your position in the table. This is a real chance to reach to the final, which is a dream for every one of us." And he too struck a cautious note. "All players have to be focused throughout the match to have a chance at reaching the final." Its advantage Al Ain on Saturday as the Boss will look to dominate and make a statement of intent. Bani Yas will look to frustrate Al Ain and an early goal will make things very interesting.
ashwani@khaleejtimes.com



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