(MENAFN- The Peninsula) chinthana wasala |
Kenyan Michael Olunga's brace against Al Shamal earned Al Duhail full points while Al Arabi's defeat against rejuvenated Al Sadd helped the Red Knights climb to the top of the QNB Stars League (QSL) standings in a week filled with thrilling action.
Following their seventh win of the season, Al Duhail took their tally to 23 points while Al Arabi had to concede their position following the 0-2 loss in the Qatar derby.
Olunga's brace also put him on par with Al Wakrah's Jacinto Dala as top scorers, with both players scoring nine goals each.
On the other hand, after 10 matches, Al Arabi have now collected 22 points from seven wins, but two losses and one draw had dragged them below the Hernan Crespo-coached side.
Al Arabi coach Younes Ali expressed satisfaction on his team's performance despite a 2-0 defeat to Al Sadd in Qatar derby on Monday.
“The match was tough and was decided by small details,” Al Arabi coach said.
“The team dominated the midfield and fought until the last moment. I am satisfied with overall performance of the team but we could have got the lead in the first half after creating chances,” he added.
Crespo hoped the Red Knights will keep the top position.
“The team played well despite absence of some players and I am very happy. Our goal is to win all the remaining matches,” he said.
The Al Sadd vs Al Arabi encounter was the cynosure of all eyes in Week 11, with the defending champions welcoming a host of their international players back after international duties.
Al Sadd, who have been struggling throughout the season, being forced to field relatively inexperienced players due to the absence of a large number of internationals, on Monday showed the strength they are famous for.
Among the returning players were the likes of Akram Afif, Hassan Al Haydos, Andre Ayew and Jung Woo-Young. The 2-0 win was their fourth in the season, but both coach Juan Manuel Lillo and Woo-Young noted that the Wolves seek a top spot in the standings by winning the remaining matches.
Meanwhile, Al Wakrah compensated for their loss against Al Arabi in the ninth round by beating Al Sailiya 5-0 with the help of a brilliant double by defender Lucas Mendes.
Interestingly, four of their goals came inside 22 minutes in the second half.
Qatar SC also collected a crucial win after outplaying Umm Salal 4-1 for their third win in a row.
Al Gharafa and Al Rayyan played out an exciting 2-2 draw while Al Markhiya held Al Ahli to a 2-2 draw following a stunning comeback in the last five minutes.