Leaders Sharjah reiterated their desire to remain Arabian Gulf League champions with a fine 3-1 win at Al Nasr which ended coach Krunoslav Jurcic’s nine-match unbeaten start.
The King travelled to Al Maktoum Stadium in the wake of a goalless draw with Bani Yas that contained a red card for Foreign Player of the Year Igor Coronado and arm injury for skipper Shahin Abdulrahman. These setbacks left no lasting impression, however, judged by Sundays result.
Striker Ricardo Gomes’ header and fellow Cape Verde star Ryan Mendes’ tap-in made it 2-0 by 39 minutes, before Curacao winger Brandley Kuwas produced a sublime solo goal in first-half injury time to reduce the arrears.
Substitute Ali Al Dhanhani’s fortunate cross free-kick, however, would settle things for the undefeated pacesetters.
Elsewhere, prolific Spanish striker Pedro Conde’s smart close-range finish at the death earned Bani Yas a valuable 1-0 home win versus promoted Hatta. This 85th-minute effort ended a five-game winless top-flight run.
Third-placed Al Ain eased the pressure on coach Ivan Leko with a 4-1, come-from-behind beating of Ajman. Abderrahmane Meziane, Mohanad Salem, Caio Canedo and Jamal Maroof made Ismail Ahmed’s third-minute own goal inconsequential, thus halting a three-match winless AGL spell.
Right-back Mohammed Fawzi’s wonder goal kept Al Jazira in the title hunt with a 1-0 triumph versus relegation haunted Fujairah.
Al Dhafra and Ittihad Kalba played out a 1-1 draw, from which Togo target man Peniel Mlapa’s strong finish on the turn levelled Joao Pedro’s opener for the hosts.
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