QNB Stars League Week 20 — Al Rayyan 1 Al Arabi 3
Al Arabi completed a hat-trick of victories when they defeated Al Rayyan 3-1 in Week 20 of the QNB Stars League at the Al Sadd Stadium on Friday.
Al Arabi’s Brazilian midfielder Diego Jardel was the star of the night by netting two goals (54th and 90+3), and providing assist for the other scored by Kwame Karikari (20th).
Abderrazaq Hamdallah gave Al Rayyan’s reply in the 73rd minute by converting from the spot. The penalty was awarded when Al Arabi’s Yasin Yaghoub handled the ball inside the box.
Hamdallah thus stayed third in the list of top scorers with 17 goals. There was a tiff inside the goal post between the Moroccan striker and Al Arabi goalkeeper Masoud Zeraei following the penalty kick and both were shown yellow card for fighting for the dead ball.
Jardel took his tally to six goals in this season’s league competition and Al Arabi, who had defeated Al Kharaitiyat and Al Markhiya in the previous weeks, moved on to 21 points. Al Rayyan remained on 39 points.
Al Rayyan enjoyed more possession (56 per cent), but found the going tough. Their players were visibly tired as they had played against Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal in the third round of AFC Champions League on Tuesday.
Al Arabi thus compensated for their 2-4 loss to Al Rayyan when they clashed in the first phase.
Indeed, it was a battle between the fans as much as it was between the players when the two teams with the most passionate and loyal fans in Qatar football faced off.
Al Arabi players saluted their supporters after the game.
Karikari opened the scoring by heading in a Jardel corner. The Ghana forward had another chance when his shot from the top of the box went wide in the first half, where Al Rayyan did not create any worthwhile opportunities.
The Lions seemed to have lost the plot from the beginning.
Jardel’s first goal was set up by Khalfan Ibrahim, while his second, that came in stoppage time, was a solo effort.
Hamdallah had a free-kick just about saved by Zeraei in the 85th minute.