Al Sadd back in league action after nailing ACL semis spot
September 19 2019 11:45 PM
Al Sadd coach Xavi (left) celebrates with his staff after his team’s 3-1 AFC Champions League quarter-final win over Saudi’s Al Nassr at the Jassim bin Hamad Stadium in Doha on Monday. (AFP)

By Sports Reporter Doha

Fresh from their AFC Champions League exploits, Al Sadd will be back in action in the QNB Stars League today when they take on Umm Salal at Al Janoub Stadium.
Earlier this week, Al Sadd ousted Saudi Arabia’s Al Nassr to advance to the semi-finals of the continental event as they continued their domination of regional club rivals.
The defending Qatar champions already have two wins in as many matches and would be keen to maintain a clean slate under new coach Xavi.
Umm Salal, on the other hand, have just one point, from a 2-2 draw against Al Rayyan, having lost successive matches against Al Khor and Al Arabi later.
Al Sadd’s victories were against Al Wakrah (4-1) and Al Shahania (7-1). Xavi’s men have played one game less as their match against Al Sailiya in Week 3 was postponed to September 24.
Umm Salal will be keen on registering their first victory. It is also a chance for them to avoid a hat-trick of defeats that will dent the morale of their players.
In today’s second match, Al Sailiya and Qatar SC will be desperate for points.
Al Sailiya, who finished a creditable third in the 2018-19 QNB Stars League, could not make a strong start this time around and have collected only a point, from their drawn encounter (1-1) with Al Khor in the opening round.
The Peregrines lost the next game 0-3 to Al Ahli.
However, Al Sailiya, under Tunisian Sami Trabelsi for long, have played one game less as their match against Al Sadd in Week 3 was postponed.
Qatar SC, coached by Spaniard Carlos Alos Ferrer, have yet to open their account, having lost 1-2 to Al Duhail, 0-2 to Al Wakrah and 1-3 to Al Gharafa.
The Kings had raised visions of victory against Al Duhail, but conceded two late goals to throw away the lead.
So both sides, who have players of calibre, will look for their first victory, which will help them get their campaign on track.

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