Matchweek 2 of the Arabian Gulf League is set to kick off on Thursday, as three games will be held on the opening day, and four matches will take place on Friday.
Fujairah face Bani Yas, Hatta play with Al Wasl and Sharjah clash with Al Wahda on Thursday. The action resumes on Friday when Al Jazira host Al Dhafra, Khorfakkan clash with Al Nasr, Ajman face Ittihad Kalba and Shabab Al Ahli play against Al Ain.
The first match of the week will see Fujairah host Bani Yas at Fujairah Stadium at 6:15pm. Fujairah enter the game on the back of a 4-2 home defeat to Sharjah in the opening matchweek.
Fujairah coach Goran Tufegdžić stressed that his team will be focusing on getting a win over Bani Yas after their league opener defeat. He added, “we addressed our errors in the first game and we need to be 100% focused on the game.”
On the other hand, Bani Yas will be looking to keep the momentum alive after their 4-1 win over Al Wasl in the league opener.
Bani Yas coach Daniel Isăilă praised Fujairah, saying they are a “strong and organized” team. He added, “I’m confident of my team’s abilities and we’re looking to put in a good performance and win the game.”
Fujairah have never defeated Bani Yas in the Arabian Gulf League, as three games ended in favour of the Sky Blues and three ended in draws.
At the same time, Al Wasl will be playing away from home against Hatta. Both teams will be looking to make a comeback as they enter Thursday’s game on the back of opening day defeats, as Hatta lost 6-0 to Al Wahda, while Al Wasl fell to a 4-1 defeat to Bani Yas.
However, Al Wasl will have a new coach at helm, as Salem Rabee took over after the departure of Romanian coach Laurențiu Reghecampf. Rabee asserted his side’s readiness for the game. He added, “I have confidence in the players’ abilities to get a win over Hatta”.
Meanwhile, Hatta coach Christos Kontis said he worked on addressing the errors done by the team in the opening match. He added, “we will treat it as a final game, and I have high confidence in the players’ abilities.”
Hatta never defeated Al Wasl in the Arabian Gulf League, as they faced off four times with one game ending in a draw and three in favour of Al Wasl.
The last game of the day will see Sharjah will host Al Wahda at Sharjah Stadium at 9pm. After their late win over Fujairah in the opening matchweek, the titleholders will face a tough task against Al Wahda, who collected the biggest win in the opening matchweek.
Despite their win over Fujairah, Sharjah coach Abdulaziz Al Anberi said that he discussed with his players their mistakes in the game. He said, “I hope the players are ready for the next game and put in a better performance.”
Al Wahda coach Vuk Rasovic said his team will be facing a tough test when the clash with the titleholders. He explained, “Sharjah have an excellent group of players, but we are also a strong team and we prepared well for the game.”
The action resumes on Friday, when Khorfakkan host Al Nasr at 6:15pm. After their impressive 4-2 win over Al Ain in the Arabian Gulf Cup, Khorfakkan fell to a 2-0 defeat to the Boss in the league.
On the other hand, Al Nasr played out a 1-1 draw with Al Jazira in the most anticipated game of the opening matchweek.
Al Jazira will host Al Dhafra at Mohamed bin Zayed Stadium at 6:15 as well. While Al Jazira dropped two points in the opening matchweek, Al Dhafra had an impressive start to the season with a 4-1 win over Ajman.
Al Dhafra never had a clean sheet in their Arabian Gulf League encounters with Al Jazira, as they conceded 44 goals in 20 matches.
The Oranges will be looking to make things right when they host Ittihad Kalba at 9pm. Kalba will also be looking to collect a positive result after opening their campaign with a 3-0 defeat to Shabab Al Ahli.
In six encounters in the Arabian Gulf League, Ajman emerged winners four times, lost once and drew once.
Meanwhile, Shabab Al Ahli will be hosting Al Ain at Rashid Stadium in the most anticipated game of the week. Both sides will be aiming to maintain their perfect start to the season and get their second win in a row, as Shabab Al Ahli defeated Kalba 3-0, and Al Ain earned a 2-0 win over Khorfakkan.
Shabab Al Ahli and Al Ain met 22 times in the Arabian Gulf League. None of these games ended in a goalless draw and a total of 70 goals were scored.