QNB Stars League Week 9 Match Report — Al Rayyan 3 Al Gharafa 2
Moroccan striker Abderrazzaq Hamdallah struck a double as Al Rayyan defeated Al Gharafa 3-2 in their QNB Stars League Week 9 clash at the refurbished Khalifa International Stadium, one of the eight 2022 FIFA World Cup venues, on Saturday.
Hamdallah scored in the ninth (penalty) and 31st minutes to take his tally to eight goals. Sebastian Soria was their other scorer (64th). Almahdi Ali (41st) and substitute Vladimir Weiss (stoppage time) were on target for Al Gharafa.
The victory helped Al Rayyan displace Al Sadd, who had lost to Al Duhail, from the second position. The Lions have 24 points, one behind Al Duhail and three more than The Wolves.
Al Gharafa put up a strong resistance before going down fighting even though they did not have it in them to put it across Al Rayyan. The Cheetahs surely did not expect a goal so early when Hamdallah converted a penalty awarded after Soria was fouled inside the box.
Al Rayyan dominated the early exchanges and the rivals showed alacrity afterwards. It was then that Hamdallah struck for a second time with an on-the-turn shot, that completely caught goalkeeper Yousuf Hassan napping, following a Soria cross from the left.
After Almahdi reduced the margin capitalising on a goalmouth melee, Amro Seraj came close to drawing parity, but for a timely save by Al Rayyan goalkeeper Omar Barry.
Soria then hit his seventh league goal this season when it was thought Al Gharafa would equalise. All that they could do was another goal by Weiss, who replaced Ahmed Alaelddin in the 67th and is recuperating from an injury, in stoppage time.