The King Abdullah Sports City stadium in Jeddah will be full tonight (max.capacity 62,241) where both teams are playing the fourth game of the third round in the AFC Qualifications (Group B) for the the World Cup 2018.
KSA is third with 7 points and UAE team forth with 6 points (Japan leader of the group with 9 points and Australia with 7 points but already played 4 games). Both teams can mix the top of the group with a victory on this fundamental match. The history is on the KSA side because the UAE team never won in Saudi Arabia in the last 34 matches (officially the first match held in 1972) which make this match even more interesting for The Whites.
“We are not afraid of the audience,”said Ali who added that the history is not relevant and the big audience can be just an additional motivation for the young UAE team.
“I don’t think about history, that’s in the past. We’ll try to change this record.”
“There is no difference between the teams at the top; UAE, Australia, Saudi and Japan. The difference is only one point, which is nothing at all. Nothing will be decided in the first round of fixtures,” said Ali.
KSA team leader (dutchman Bert van Marwijk) has a different opinion about this special match:
“It’s a special game against an opponent who also wants to go to Russia, it’s also a derby. We’re neighbours. So for several reasons this is a special game. We are looking forward to it.
These are two teams who know each other very well and don’t have secrets for each other. They have none for us and the other way round it’s the same.”
King Abdullah Sports City stadium , Jeddah, October 11, 2016 at 21:45.