Sparks bound to fly in crucial Al Sailiya, Al Rayyan QSL clash
17 Oct 2017 - 23:57
By Armstrong Vas / The Peninsula
Fifth-placed Al Sailiya will aim for full points - which will help them to leapfrog over Al Rayyan - when the two teams clash in Round Five of the QNB Stars League (QSL) at the Al Ahli Stadium on Friday.
Both the teams are preparing hard for their tough match and sparks are bound to fly in the clash as both are tied with same number of points (9) and also on goal difference but Al Rayyan are placed fourth having scored more goals.
Moroccan forward Abderrazzak Hamdellah is leading The Lions’ charge while Al Sailiya should take heart from the fact that Brazilian Wagner Ribeiro has sort of regained his original form, as was evident from his display over Al Kharaitiyat in their previous game.
The Al Sailiya team management hailed the Brazilian playmaker, who came up with a delightful display during their victory over Al Kharaitiyat on Saturday.
Al Sailiya players are keen to build on their victories in the previous two rounds and have been training under the watchful eyes of Tunisian coach Sami Trabelsi.
The fifth round will kick off tomorrow with matches set for Friday and Saturday.
Al Kharaitiyat will open the proceedings by taking on Al Gharafa at the Al Khor Stadium tomorrow.
On Friday, besides the Al Sailiya-Al Rayyan clash, Al Khor will meet Al Markhiya and Al Arabi face Al Sadd. The round’s action will conclude on Saturday, with Umm Salal taking on Al Duhail and Qatar SC facing Al Ahli.
Elsewhere, Al Sadd will be looking to take forward their impeccable performance into Round five when they take on Al Arabi in the derby match on October 20 at Al Arabi Stadium.
The Al Arabi-Al Sadd derby is part of the Qatar football legend and it always evokes a keen interest among all stakeholders.
Both the teams go into the match at back of contrasting records against their name.
Al Sadd go into the Match of the Week on the back of a strong performance against Qatar SC while Al Arabi had lost to Umm Salal in the previous round and must find motivation ahead of the derby.
Al Sadd and Al Duhail are moving neck and neck atop the standings, the latter leading the table on goal difference, while Al Arabi are ninth with three points that they gained from their victory over Qatar SC in Round 3. So there is a lot at stake for both sides. The presence of top players on both sides will be the icing on the cake.
Al Duhail’s game against Umm Salal will also have all ingredients of a thriller.
The Red Knights will be bolstered by the presence of coach Djamel Belmadi back on the touchline as he was ordered to be on the stands for their last two league matches due to a disciplinary action taken after their Round 2 fixture against Al Arabi.
The face-off between two in-form strikers, Youssef El Arabi of Al Duhail and Yannick Sagbo of Umm Salal, will be the sub-plot of this encounter.
Both players performed crucial roles, with hat-tricks, in their Round 3 victories. El Arabi is leading the top scorers’ chart with eight goals.
Al Graham will also be on a high, having scored their first victory in the league, when they face Al Kharaitiyat. Promoted Al Markhiya and Al Ahli will have to raise their game by a few notches to move up from the bottom when they play Al Khor and Qatar SC respectively.
The fourth-round action saw the maximum number of goals (27) scored for a week so far in this season’s league. Obviously, there were many high-scoring games and outstanding individual performances.
There was not a single drawn result too. All these factors augur well for the competition and fans can look forward to more and more exciting contests in the coming weekend.