‘Super-sub’ Mohamed Abdulrahman emerged to head Al Ain into the Arabian Gulf Cup semi-finals after a pulsating encounter with Sharjah.
A clash of the last two Arabian Gulf League champions lived up to its top billing. Friday night’s visitors to Hazza bin Zayed Stadium went ahead in the ninth minute through an Igor Coronado penalty, before Togo striker Kodjo Fo-Doh Laba’s 28th-minute scissor-kick and Abdulrahman’s 87th-minute clincher from a corner kick turned the tie around.
“We presented one of our best matches in our stadium and among our fans, we made many opportunities,” said Al Ain coach Ivan Leko.
“We were the best from the start until the final whistle and we achieved a deserved victory. And everyone did well, including the UAE internationals who trained with the team twice before tonight’s confrontation.
“Khalid Essa and Ahmed Barman showed a strong desire to participate, despite the stress and deserve praise for the feedback they made in the confrontation.”
Al Jazira await the Boss in January 9’s last-four fixtures thanks to their 4-0 humbling of Abu Dhabi neighbours Al Wahda.
In the other side of the draw, holders Shabab Al Ahli Dubai Club thrashed Al Wasl 5-1 and Habib Fardan got the only goal as Al Nasr beat Fujairah 1-0.
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