DOHA: Al Rayyan will be bidding to win their second consecutive trophy when they lock horns with Al Kharaitiyat in the Sheikh Jassim Cup final at Doha Stadium today.
Al Rayyan enjoyed a 3-0 victory against Al Wakra in the semi-final, while Al Kharaitiyat shocked Eljaish 2-1.
Al Rayyan coach Diego Aguirre said his team is eager to win the final but expects a tough match. He said: “The final match will be a tough match, however, Al Rayyan is ready for it.”
He added: “We take this competition very seriously and consider it as a very good training for the Qatar Start League (QSL).”
The reigning champions beat Al Sadd 1-0 in last season’s final and Aguirre said he is satisfied with the club’s record in the competition.
He said: “It’s a good thing that we won the Sheikh Jassim Cup many times and that we’re winning titles every year in different tournaments.”
He added: “As I said, it’s very important to win the Sheikh Jassim Cup.”
Al Rayyan player, Ahmad Ala El Din echoed his coach’s view saying the team is ready for the match. He said: “We’re ready for this match, all teams were good in the Cup.”
He added: “Al Kharaitiyat has some really good players and hopefully we will do our best to win this match.”
Aguirre’s opposite number, Bertrand Marchand said his team is keen to finish the tournament on a winning note, who are one victory away from Cup glory.
Marchand said: “We’ve done a good job during the Cup, and we trained very well in the training camp abroad.”
He added: “The upcoming match will be a difficult one but we are motivated to win the match and are ready to win it. With all due respect to Al Rayyan, and considering the won the Cup more than once before, we are positive that we will play very well on Saturday (today).”
The former French footballer is hoping for Yousif Al Qedewy can shine in the final. He said: “The last five matches went very well for us in the Cup and I expect Al Qedewy to play extremely well in the final.”
Player Saleh Anad, said of the match: “We are eager to win this match. We will play to win this match. The matches we played in Holland during the camp prepared us well for the final match.”
Meanwhile, Saoud Al Mohannadi, General Secretary of Qatar Football Association (QFA) congratulated both sides on reaching the final, and wished the finalists the best of luck.
Al Mohannadi said: “QFA congratulates Al Rayyan and Al Kharaitiyat on reaching the final of the Sheikh Jassim Cup 2013. The tournament kick starts the 2013/2014 sports season in Qatar and is a prelude to QSL. We wish them the best of luck and hope to see a unique performance in the final match which will take place in Doha Stadium at 6:30pm.”
He added: “We highly appreciate the unique level that our referees have reached in their refereeing performance and are happy to witness the constant performance development they are undergoing. We are witnessing this constant development through their successful refereeing skills that are conducted in different QFA tournament matches. Sheikh Jassim Cup was a great example to showcase the excellent performance of our referees.” THE PENINSULA