Ciel dents Al Ahli's chances in Arabian Gulf Cup

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Ciel dents Al Ahlis chances in Arabian Gulf Cup
Mohamed Jaber of Al Ahli and Jociel Ferreira of Kalba in action during the Arabian Gulf Cup at Rashid Stadium on Friday.

Dubai - Red Knights held by Ittihad Kalba

By James Jose

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Published: Fri 11 Nov 2016, 9:15 PM

Last updated: Fri 11 Nov 2016, 11:18 PM

Brazilian striker Ciel dented his former employers Al Ahli's chances of making it to the semifinal of the Arabian Gulf Cup after helping his new club Ittihad Kalba steal a draw.
Ciel, returning to his old stomping ground - the Rashid Stadium, where he spent two seasons, headed home seven minutes from time to cancel out substitute Saeed Jasim's goal on 69 minutes.
The Red Knights now face an anxious wait for the last round, to be played out next month, to know if they can qualify. Al Ahli finished their Group B engagements with 11 points, while Al Shabab and Al Nasr, who are on 10 points, still have a game in hand.
Newcomers Kalba are already out after accumulating four points from five matches.
Al Ahli coach Cosmin Olaroiu was lost for words. "What do I say," Olaroiu said after the game.
"We gave them (Kalba) this result. The move that resulted in a goal was not even a foul. It wasn't even a foul in the first place. And during the freekick there was a foul on Salmin (Khamis). This is not in the best interest of UAE football. But I didn't understand the game.We created the scoring situations but couldn't score," the Romanian added.
Meanwhile Kalba coach Fabio Viviani said that this was an important result looking at the season ahead. "This result is not important for the competition as we are already out of contention. But it is important for the season and this result will help the players," said Viviani.
"It was a strong game against a strong team. I cannot ask for more from my players," the Italian added. Elsewhere, in the UAE Capital of Abu Dhabi, Al Wahda beat newcomers Hatta by a solitary goal. Khalil Ibrahim scored the winner in the first minute of stoppage time.
It was Al Wahda's first win in the competition but it came a tad too late as the holders are already out of contention after logging six points from six games in Group A.
Meanwhile, Hatta are yet to log a point and are right at the bottom of the group after losing all five fixtures. At the Rashid Stadium, Al Ahli had bucket loads of opportunities with Rodrigo Lima and Everton Ribeiro missing a couple despite some hard work put in by exciting youngster Waleed Ambar.
Also, the Kalba goalkeeper Mohamed Osman, came up with some good saves to deny the Red Knights, early on in the game.
Lima had the first look at goal, coming up with a dangerous header but Osman was quick with his reflexes as he produced a fine save, on 15 minutes. Five minutes later, Kyung Kwon's powerful grounder was fended away by Osman. Al Ahli botched another opportunity after Waled Hussain misdirected a cross from the right when there were three players waiting.
There were plent more chances after the break with Ribeiro coming close after Mohamed Sabil had sent a neat pass in. Ribeiro cleverly backheeled but Kalba captain Salam Shaker averted the danger.
The impressive Waleed Ambar fired an inch perfect cross from the left and Salmin Khamis tried to head but couldn't get enough on the ball. It was Ambar again a little later but a sliding Lima couldn't make contact.
Al Ahli did go ahead on 69 minutes with substitute Saeed Jasim, who had come on for Majed Hassan, guiding it home after Saed Ahmed had sent in a floater from the left.
But Ciel ensured they would end on level terms with a fine header off a Bakary Kone freekick, with seven minutes left.
james@khaleejtimes.com



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