By Sports Reporter/Doha
Al Sadd overtook Al Ahli to go top of the QNB Stars League with a 4-1 win over Al Arabi, while defending champions Al Duhail suffered a morale-shattering 3-0 rout by Al Gharafa in week six action of Qatar’s premier tournament yesterday.
Algerian Baghdad Bounedjah and Spaniard Santi Cazorla put Al Sadd in front in the first half before Abdelkarim Hassan and Rodrigo Tabata completed the formalities in the second session.
Al Arabi’s Icelandic star Aaron Gunnarson scored a consolation goal for the ‘Dream Team’ at the Grand Hamad Stadium, their home ground.
Al Sadd’s fifth win in six matches – they also have a draw – took them to 16 points, one ahead of over Al Ahli, who had beaten Umm Salal on Saturday.
Earlier a brace by Muad Hassan (41st and 59th minutes) and late strike by Ahmed Alaaeldin (87th) helped Al Gharafa post their fourth win to be on 12 points and occupy the third place in the table.
Al Duhail remained on nine points from six matches with three victories, two defeats and one draw.
Al Gharafa dominated the match from the word go and could have gone ahead in the first 15 minutes itself.
In the sixth minute, Alaaeldin, stationed close to the edge of the Al Duhail box, received a long cross from the half-line. Despite being chased by a couple of Al Duhail markers, he ran a little wide and then fired a shot that sailed above the Al Duhail crossbar in what was the first real attempt at goal.
A couple of minutes later, Al Gharafa’s Sofiane Hanni got a chance to aim at the goal from inside the box, but the Algerian midfielder had little pace on his shot to worry goalkeeper Mohammed al-Bakri.
After a few hits and misses, Al Duhail’s Eduardo Rodrigues fired a bullet from the edge of the box, but young Al Gharafa keeper Salah Hassan produced a dive to deflect the ball away in the 17th minute.
Seven minutes later, Al Duhail’s Mohamed Muntari curled in a free-kick that was once again spiritedly saved by young Salah.
Al Gharafa opened the scoring with a great solo run by Muad who ran for almost one third of the entire pitch with Sultan al-Brake giving chase.
Karim Boudiaf, Mohamed Emad and Muntari also jumped in to stop Muad who, after reaching inside the box, produced a left-footed drive to score to the left of the keeper. It was celebration time for Al Gharafa as Qatar national team coach Felix Sanchez watched from the stands.
Muad was at it again as he beat Boudiaf with pace by grabbing a long cross first. After running a couple of yards with the ball, Muad fired from the edge of the box to score his team’s second goal with a right-foot drive that stayed low on its way into the net.
Ahmed Alaaeldin tapped one in deep into the game from close range to round off the tally.
The third match of the day saw Al Rayyan pip Al Kharaitiyat 2-0 with goals in either half from Abdulaziz Hatem and Yohan Boli at Al Khor Stadium.
Hatem struck in the 44th minute off an assist from Argentinian defender Gabriel Mercado while Boli scored from the penalty spot in the 70th minute to seal the outcome in Al Rayyan’s favour.
Al Rayyan’s third win in six matches sees them occupy fourth spot in the standings with 10 points.
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