DUBAI: Sharjah clinched its first title of 2023 with a 1-0 win over Al Ain in the Emirates Super Cup at the Al Maktoum Stadium tonight in front of 15,000 spectators.
The 15th started at a tense pace, with chances at both ends and frenetic fans hoping their teams were on the pitch, but after a frantic opening five minutes, players from both teams settled down and began finding time on the ball.
Al Ain’s left midfielder Adrial Morenko looked particularly dangerous as he found Kojo Fodo Raba free in the box, but the striker – who played in the Emirates Pro League last Friday against Itti Harder Karba scored the 97th-minute winner – unable to get his shot off. Yarmolenko, who had previously been dealt with West Ham in the Premier League, was close with a curling kick before continued pressure from Sharjah, the only player to beat Al Jazeera in the league last season. because of the team.
Bosnian international Pjanic found space on the left and his cross was caught by Giannini, but Khalid Essa made a smart save on his right. The Kings were without center back Kostas Manolas to a groin injury after just 10 minutes and were forced to regroup defensively with Gustavo Alemoa on the field, but they nearly broke the deadlock seconds later. Brazilian Luanzinho met Ousmane Camara’s deep cross at the back post, but his glanced header flashed past the post.
Caio Lucas then tried his luck from 30 yards out, but Eisa slammed down well and stifled the powerful shot. ADNOC Pro League winner Al Ain tried to slow down the game after an early scare, but Sharjah quickly pressed and won the ball back. The UAE Presidents Cup winners were brilliant in the first half but were almost behind when Soufiane Rahimi tapped the crossbar from an impossible angle for Serhiy Rebrov’s men. But Sharjah eventually broke the deadlock after Fo-Doh Laba sent a corner into their own net, with the Kings well deserved 1-0 going into the half-time after their dominant performance.
Rebrov’s team talk at halftime seemed to work as they immediately put Sharjah at a disadvantage as Al Zaeem fired in the second quarter. Desperate to make amends for his unfortunate own goal, Fo-Doh Laba made an excellent save from Adel Al-Hosani. His header looked destined for the top corner, but the goalkeeper’s superb reflexes kept Sharjah’s narrow lead.
Rebrov, the former Tottenham Hotspur and Dynamo Kiev striker, was increasingly frustrated on the touchline as his side – competing in the Emirates Super Cup for the seventh time and for their fourth Trying for a title — without success. Ahmad Barman nearly had a shot after a clever encounter with Eric Menezes, but a late tackle by Emirates Shaheen Abdulrahman prevented the midfielder from firing.
With 12 minutes of stoppage time after 90 minutes, Al Ain gave it his all in Sharjah. They pushed tall centre-back Kouame Autonne into the penalty area in the hope that the ball would fall into the hands of one of the white players. Tensions boiled over as Sharjah coach Olaroyo Cosmin was shown a red card, but in the end it didn’t matter as the Kings made their third appearance in the final to secure their second Emirates Super League win. cup champion.