By Sports Reporter/Doha
Al Kharaitiyat players celebrate a goal during the match against Al Shahania yesterday.
After being relegated from the QNB Stars League this season, Al Markhiya had a reason to smile yesterday as they outclassed Al Shamal 4-1 in the Emir Cup first round match.
At the Grand Hamad Stadium, Markhiya dominated the game throughout to run away with easy victory. In the second round, Markhiya will take on Al Khor on April 28.
The Qatargas League outfit Al Shamal struggled to keep pace with Markhiya, who were led superbly by attacking midfielder Eric de Oliveira Pereira.
The Brazilian scored in the 65th minute and he also assisted Mohamed Salah al-Neel’s opening goal in the 30th minute. Al-Neel was also impressive on the day as he collected his second goal in the 54th minute, before Leonardo Henrik de Souza converted a penalty to complete an emphatic victory for Markhiya.
For Shamal, Mohamed Hares equalised in the 50th minute but their hopes for victory was quickly snuffed out by Shamal’s attacking display.
Markhiya had a point to prove coming into the match. They had finished last in the QNB Stars League this season, and find themselves in the second division.
So it was obvious that Adel Sellami’s side were keen to make up for their failure in the league with some impressive performance in the Emir Cup. And they did show how lethal they can be yesterday.
After coming close on couple of occasions, Markhiya finally found the net in the 30th minute. Pereira played a delicious pass to al-Neel, who controlled the ball skilfully and placed his header above Al Shamal goalkeeper Chehab Salah al-Deen.
Markhiya continued to apply pressure but al-Neel and Pereira failed to add to the scoreline. Shamal started the second half brightly and equalised in the 50th minute. Mohammed Hares received a cross from Mubarak Saleh al-Rashidi and volleyed it past Markhiya custodian Mohamed Montasser Khrub.
However, Markhiya needed only four minutes to restore the lead. Saleh Badr al-Yazidi played a through ball to al-Neel, who calmly slotted in the ball from four yards.
While Shamal went all out for their second goal and equaliser, Markhiya added their third. The impressive Pereira, who had led his team’s attack, struck in the 65th minute. In the 85th minute, de Souza made it 4-1 after converting a penalty as he shot to the top right corner.
In the second match of the day, Al Kharaitiyat beat Al Shahania 3-1. Tiberkanine Rachid scored a brace, while Mohamed al-Yazidi struck a goal for the winners. For Shahania, Vasquez Luciano Vlaudio scored the lone goal. Kharaitiyat will play against Umm Salal in the next round on April 29.
On Sunday, Al Wakrah and Mesaimeer had sealed their passage into second round with wins over QNB Stars league sides. Wakrah scripted a sensational comeback to edge out Qatar Sports Club 3-2, while Mesaimeer beat Al Ahli 3-1 on penalties. Wakrah set-up a second round clash with Al Arabi, while Mesaimeer will face Al Sailiya.
The Emir Cup is the most prestigious domestic football tournament and brings down the curtains on the nine-month long football season in Qatar. The event offers a chance for lower division teams to test their mettle against the big guns as they bid to qualify for the final at the Khalifa Stadium on May 19.
The top four teams in the QNB Stars League – Al Duhail, Al Sadd, Al Rayyan and Al Gharafa will kick off their campaigns directly from the quarter-final stage of the competition, where they will be joined by four other teams who will have to work their way up from rounds one and two.
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