2018/19 Arabian Gulf League champions Sharjah are determined to prove their stark decline in form is not terminal when they host Khor Fakkan.
The King’s winless run extended to five matches last weekend when beaten 2-1 by Al Nasr. This third defeat during this alarming spell saw the long-term leaders drop further back into third, four points off the pace.
They will now aim to answer the doubts swirling about them on Thursday night against 11th-placed opponents who snapped a four-match losing run last Sunday, versus Al Dhafra.
“The difficult circumstances we went through and the current situation of the team necessitate that we redouble efforts,” said defender Khalid Ibrahim. “We enter each match sensing the importance of its points, preserving our chances for the title.”
Contrasting ambitions, on the same night, abound in the clash between bottom-placed Hatta and leaders Al Jazira. President’s Cup and Arabian Gulf Cup finalists Shabab Al Ahli Dubai Club travel to an Ajman kept out of the drop zone on head-to-head record alone, while second-bottom Fujairah should be inspired to snap Al Wasl’s nine-match AGL undefeated streak.
Friday witnesses the latest meeting between great rivals Al Wahda and Al Ain, mid-table matters define Ittihad Kalba v Dhafra and second-placed Bani Yas face a stern examination versus on-song fourth-placed challengers Nasr.
MATCH-WEEK 20 FIXTURES
17:45 Ajman v Shabab Al Ahli Dubai Club
17:45 Hatta v Al Jazira
20:15 Sharjah v Khor Fakkan
20:15 Fujairah v Al Wasl
17:45 Bani Yas v Al Nasr
17:45 Ittihad Kalba v Al Dhafra
20:15 Al Wahda v Al Ain