Striker Khalil eyes more glory with Red Knights

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Striker Khalil eyes more glory with Red Knights
Al Ahli frontman Ahmed Khalil has had a stellar year.

Published: Sat 30 Apr 2016, 10:51 PM

Last updated: Sun 1 May 2016, 12:54 AM

Al Ahli frontman Ahmed Khalil said that winning the prestigious President's Cup will cap off a brilliant year for him personally and added that he wants to achieve more in years to come.

The 24-year-old UAE international has had a stellar year, so to speak, with his exploits on the pitch helping him clinch the AFC Player of the Year award, the first time an Emirati has been named the continent's finest footballer. Khalil guided the Red Knights to the final of the AFC Champions League where they lost to China's Guangzhou Evergrande and he also them win the Arabian Gulf League for a seventh time.

Khalil said that they have now set their sights on the President's Cup.
"I'm happy to win the AFC Player of the Year Award and at the same time we win the League. I hope we win the President's Cup. Every player is focused at this point," said Khalil.
"We have now achieved our first target, which was to take the League and that was important for us. We fought throughout this year and wanted to make sure we took the League. But there is another target in which we have to fight and have to work towards and that's the President's Cup. Hopefully, we'll fight for this because we all want to win it so much," he added.

Khalil was also pleased with the team played this year, especially that they also had to juggle with their run in the AFC Champions League as well as keep an eye on the domestic front.
"The important thing this year was we played very well. We had so much pressure to deal with from the first game because we also played in the Asian Champions League. But thankfully, we continued on our path to take the League and we have to continue again. That is another target, we have to achieve," he said.

Khalil, who has been with Al Ahli right since his junior days, also heaped praise on coach Cosmin Olaroiu and his staff for the work that they have done.
"If you want something you have to fight, you have to work more towards what you want. And Cosmin and his staff, they worked a lot with the team, they helped the players, they helped the team and this is the important thing for us. Now, we have to do what the coach says and hopefully, we will achieve the next target," said the club captain.

On the personal front, he said: "I like to play football. This is the important thing for me. But the important thing is I have to work, work hard every day, every hour, every minute. This is important for me if I want to bring out the best in me. I like football the most, I like to do my best every time and, for me, it never stops. Hopefully, every year I want to take everything, achieve new things."

By James Jose

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