Buoyant Bani Yas’ bid for Arabian Gulf League success is being boosted by lethal centre forwards finishing like legends “Ruud van Nistelrooy or Samuel Eto’o”, according to grateful winger Royston Drenthe.
Top-flight leading marksman Joaquin Larrivey struck his seventh goal since a summer move from Celta Vigo to secure a 2-2 draw with Al Jazira on Saturday, following up from partner and ex-Parma front man Ishak Belfodil’s earlier header.
Their 12 strikes have provided the fuel for the rapidly-improving Sky Blues’ push up to third and fellow new boy Drenthe revealed his joy playing alongside them.
He said: “It is fantastic. They are both big, they can control a ball, head a ball and finish crazily like [former Manchester United and Netherlands star] Ruud van Nistelrooy or [ex-Internazionale and Barcelona forward] Samuel Eto’o.
“When you are a winger playing with these kind of players, you are happy with an assist. Against Jazira, my assist for Larivey felt like a goal.
“That is the way I play with them – an assist feels like a goal.”
The decision to give boss Luis Garcia a totally-revamped foreign quartet for his second season already looks a wise decision, a big improvement on eighth place likely.
When asked if he felt something positive was building at Bani Yas Stadium, he replied: “Definitely. The group has that feeling.
“I do not want to say how far we can go or how well we will do. But there is a confidence within the group at the moment. Coming from behind against Al Jazira was pleasing, but there is still some disappointment in the air that we didn’t go on and win the match.
“I think we are definitely here to compete this year, and we have the side to do that.”
On Saturday, the Sky Blues travel to struggling Al Dhafra.
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