AGLEAGUE, matchweek 22- day 2
Matchweek 22 of the Arabian Gulf League resumes on Friday as Dibba face Ajman, Ittihad Kalba play with Sharjah and Al Wahda clash with Fujairah.
Dibba will host Ajman at Fujairah Stadium at 18:00 in a very crucial game for the Sailors. Dibba will be looking to keep up their recent positive results in hopes of escaping relegation. They collected eight points in the second half of the season but remained at the bottom on 12 points. They are now three points behind Emirates Club and Fujairah.
On the other hand, Ajman sit in the middle of the table. The Oranges are seventh on 28 points and will be looking to further improve their position in the remaining games.
Their clash in the first half of the season ended in a 2-1 win for Ajman.
After Dibba’s recent performances, Ajman coach Ayman El Ramady expects a tough game against the Sailors. “This is an important game for us. We want to improve our position,” the Dibba manager said.
Ittihad Kalba will host Sharjah, with the game set to kick off at 18:00 as well. The Tigers have been going through a rough patch since the beginning of the second half of the season as they collected four points only from eight games. They dropped to 11th place on 22 points.
Meanwhile, Sharjah top the standings on 51 points and need five points only to officially seal the title.
Sharjah’s clash with Kalba in the first half of the season ended in a 2-2 draw.
Kalba coach Fabio Viviani said they’d be looking to give Sharjah their first defeat of the season. “We’ve to minimize our mistakes. I’m confident of the players’ abilities,” he added.
Sharjah coach Abdulaziz Al Anberi praised Kalba’s performances and called on the fans to support the King in this important phase.
At 18:05, Al Wahda will play with Fujairah at Al Nahyan Stadium. The Clarets have been putting in strong performances recently. They earned a tough 4-3 victory over Al Rayyan in the AFC Asian Champions League. They also beat Shabab Al Ahli 1-0 in the league to raise their tally to 34 points in fifth place and will be looking to collect maximum points in hopes of finishing third.
On the other end, Fujairah are hoping to escape relegation as they sit 13th on 15 points. A draw on Friday will help them swap places with 12th-placed Emirates Club, who lost 5-1 to Shabab Al Ahli on Wednesday.
Fujairah coach Abdulla Mesfer is confident of his team’s ability to collect the full points, despite the increasing pressure on the players.
Meanwhile, Al Wahda coach Henk ten Cate said his team would be looking to keep the momentum going after their win over Al Rayyan, but admitted the Fujairah game won’t be easy.