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Al Sadd keen on win against Al Ain in reverse clash today

Al Sadd keen on win against 
Al Ain in reverse clash today

Tribune News Network
Doha
A thrilling 3-3 draw during the opening encounter in the return of the 2020 AFC Champions League for Al Sadd against UAE’s Al Ain hasn’t dented the home side’s resolve and aspirations.
The draw meant inaugural AFC Champions League winners Al Ain took their first point of the current edition but remained in fourth place, while Al Sadd conceded the Group D top spot to Al Nassr, dropping to second with six points.
The Xavi Hernandez-guided Al Sadd are sternly focused on the reverse clash to be played at the Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium on Friday.
Al Sadd midfielder Guillerme Torres emphasised on the team’s target ahead of the crucial clash saying, “Our goal is to win and control the game from the start.”
The Brazilian elaborated: “As the coach said, the match will be difficult against a tough team. We know the AFC Champions League is a different tournament. We played a good game last time, but unfortunately we could not win.”
“Our goal is to go as far as possible in this tournament. The points of the next match will be very important to us. Winning will take us closer to qualification for the next stage. With all respect to the opponent, we will go into the game looking for victory.
He added: “I want to thank the Qatari people for the good reception. Everyone treats me well, and Al Sadd has the best players at the moment.
“The advantage of playing at our stadium is not great, and the absence of the fans will not prevent us from achieving victory. We must work hard and do our best to get the win.”
Xavi said his players will revel under pressure.
“We need three points to go to the next stage. We are in a crucial phase now. We played well in the last game but we need to finish off the chances in front of goal, and not make mistakes that lead to conceding goals.
“We have a huge desire to win. I enjoy this sort of pressure that’s on the team, and the players like it as well.”
On his team’s style of play, he said, “In the last game, we scored three but we conceded three goals as well, so we must improve defensively to be successful in attack,” he said.
“Everyone expects good results from the team. I don’t feel pressure while playing football. We were better than Al Ain in the last game and we must enjoy the game and create more chances in order to win,” he added.
Meanwhile, Al Ain FC head coach Pedro Emanuel is holding on to hopes of qualification to the Round of 16. “The first game was superb, and we played extremely well especially for a side that had not played a competitive match in six months,” he said.
“We know Al Sadd play an attacking game and have the ability to score and finish games off, but we knew how to deal with the game in order to get the result we wanted to get at the end. We respect Al Sadd, but we know we have everything we need to get the win.
“We have two or three plans for every game, as a match goes by, we try to adapt to how things are coming along and that is what happened in the first game. We managed to get the draw at the end and pressed hard to get the winner.
“Expectations are much higher after the first game, but we have to be realistic and acknowledge the fact that our chances of progression are slim. Nonetheless, we will keep fighting till the end.”
Al Sadd remain in a better position to advance, and a win on Friday could put them within a point of the Round of 16 with two games still to play, should Al Nassr repeat their win over Sepahan in the late Friday evening fixture.StandingsGroup D
Club M W D L GF GA GD Pts
Al Nassr 3 2 1 0 6 3 3 7
Al Sadd 3 1 2 0 8 5 3 5
Sepahan 3 1 0 2 4 5 -1 3
Al Ain 3 0 1 2 4 9 -5 1

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