Jovanovic challenges Al Nasr to reach AGC semis

Denzil Pinto 00:07 04/10/2016
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Looking ahead: Ivan Jovanovic

Despite two wins from two, Al Nasr coach Ivan Jovanovic admits the Arabian Gulf Cup sits low on his list of priorities but that has not stopped him from challenging his players to maintain their perfect record.

The Blue Wave have had a perfect start to the competition with impressive victories over giants Al Ain and Al Ahli and now sit third in Group B.

The 2015 winners will look to claim maximum points again when Dubai rivals Al Shabab visit Al Maktoum Stadium on Tuesday night.

Their opponents go into the game on the back of a 3-2 defeat to Al Ahli last week but Jovanovic feels his fringe players have the quality to overcome the Hawks and strengthen their chances of reaching the last-four.

“The Arabian Gulf Cup is not a priority for the team but it is an important tournament for a large number of players who will play in the absence of international players,” said the 54-year-old.

“The possibility of reaching the semi-finals competition will be good for them and for the team in general, and I expect after winning  tough matches against Al Ahli and Al Ain, the Al Shabab win would be a good motivation for the players.”

The Serbian will be without a number of players including Salim Saleh and Tariq Ahmed, who are injured, and is sweating on the fitness of Khalid Jalal, who picked up a knock in the 3-2 win over Al Ain on Friday.

Meanwhile, in Group A, will be aiming to pick up their second victory when they travel to Hatta, who are still yet to get off the mark, having lost all three games including the 4-0 defeat to Emirates.

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