By Sports Reporter/Doha
Al Duhail in contention for three more titles this season, coach Djamel
Belmadi said his team are ready for the decisive matches in the coming
Al Duhail play Al Gharafa in the Qatar Cup semifinal tomorrow.
“We still have the same determination to win titles. Our team displayed strong performances despite the busy match schedule. We are ready for the cup fixtures. We have a lot of important work to do because we have decisive matches next month in addition to the Emir Cup. We reiterate that we enter all tournaments with the aim of winning the title. All matches are important for us and my team proved its potential,” Belmadi said.
“Al Duhail is the most important stop in my coaching career because the team includes a large group of young players and they are the best currently. I wish to see players such as Bassam al-Rawi, Abdulla Abdelsalam and Nasser al-Yazidi play in the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar,” added Belmadi.
“I am satisfied with my players’ performance. I think our match against Al Gharafa will be very tough and strong especially since Al Gharafa had many good performances in the second phase of QNS Stars League. Also, Al Gharafa won their last group-stage match in the AFC Champions League.
“I have huge confidence in my players. I wished for (Youssef) Msakny to be with us. I deal with players not according to their age or name, but with their efforts on the pitch,” added Belmadi.
Commenting on the Video Assistant Referee to be used in the Qatar Cup, the Algerian said, “I really support it because it is crucial for the development of the game as small details can decide the outcome of a game.”
Al Duhail player Karim Boudiaf said, “The cup matches are different than league games because no one can predict the result. We have a team capable of pulling off a win despite the difficulty of Qatar Cup because we have with us such strong teams like Al Sadd, Al Rayyan and Al Gharafa. There is a big difference with Al Gharafa of late as they are a transformed side after the recruitment of Wesley Sneijder, Assim Madibo and Mehdi Taremi.”
Looking forward to the match: Gharafa coach
Al Gharafa coach Bulent Uygun was looking forward to the match against QNB Stars League winners.
“I would like to congratulate Al Duhail on winning the league title. We finished the league in the fourth position and presented good performances in the AFC Champions League. Had it not been for some refereeing mistakes, we would have qualified for the next round,” he said.
“The Qatar Cup is a very important competition and all clubs are looking forward to winning the title. I hope luck will be on our side. We are facing Al Duhail, who had not lost this season in the QNB Stars League.
“I took over the technical responsibility of Al Gharafa in the second phase at a time when we had a tough time by the end of the first half. However, the available players presented their best and our ambition was to reach the top four. The Qatar Cup is crucial for all clubs. We are seeking the title and are counting on our fans to support us.
“We have a number of injured players, some with minor injuries while others have serious injuries such as Almahdi Ali and Thamer Jamal. They may not play this match. We are all focused on the Al Duhail game and are confident of winning. We are not afraid of Al Duhail, but we respect them.”
Al Gharafa player Sneijder said, “We are aware that this match is tough, however we are here now in the semifinal because we emerged as the fourth in the league table which was not an easy task. Al Duhail are one of the best teams in Qatar. I have played against them only once, in the league. They have players of high calibre. At the same time, our squad has improved a lot of late.”
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