Al Shamal plummet to second division
Doha: Umm Salal and Al Ahli played out a 1-1 draw, while Al Gharafa trounced Al Shamal 7-0 in Round 23 matches of Qatar Stars League here yesterday.
At the Suhaim bin Hamad Stadium Tuncay Sanli gave the lead for Umm Salal in the 47th minute while Alain Dioko equalised in the 69th for Al Ahli.
Umm Salal had shown good form before the break and were one of the favourites to finish in the top four but haven’t had the best of results in the second half of the season.
In the seven matches since the restart, Salal have only managed to win two, had one draw and suffered four losses.
They were keen to prove that those set of results were not an indicator of the team’s quality. Ahli on the other hand knew that if they got the maximum points out of this match, then they would draw closer to El Jaish. So both teams began on an equal footing.
Ahli are known for their counter attacking play and but despite many moves created, they weren’t able to threaten the opposition defence too much. Umm Salal was content to absorb the pressure and was looking to attack when possible. After the end of the first half, neither side were able to find the goal.
The second half started on a very positive note for Umm Salal when just two minutes in, Sanli found the back of the net to give his team the lead. Ahli are not a team to give up and kept building attacks and looking for the leveler. They were finally rewarded in the 69th minute when Dioko scored yet another goal to increase his tally at the top of the scorer’s table.
After this goal both sides tried to find more goals and though Ahli had created more chances, they could not find the winner as the match ended in a stalemate.
By the end of the match Ahli had 16 shots at goal with five on target but with just one goal to show for their efforts. Salal on the other hand had just eight attempts with four of those on target but still could score only once. This result coupled with Al Gharafa defeating Al Shamal meant that Ahli have now moved down in the standings to sixth. Gharafa are now in fifth but are just a point ahead.