Al Arabi will not be devoid of confidence when they take on Al Sadd in what is dubbed as the Qatar Derby in Week 13 of the QNB Stars League on Saturday, 24th November. The kick-off is at 18:30 at the Al Arabi Stadium.
Al Sadd are occupying the second spot in QNB Stars League standings, while Al Arabi jumped by one spot to eighth after the Week 12 action.
Both Al Sadd and Al Arabi had registered victories in the last round, against Al Kharaitiyat (7-1) and Al Khor (1-0) respectively.
This is the first high-profile match in the 2018-19 season QNB Stars League’s second leg that started on 8th November. Both clubs have huge fan following, so the clash will be noted on and off the field.
Al Sadd are on 23 points (seven wins, two draws and one defeat) with a goal difference of 35, the most by any team. They scored 45 goals and conceded 10.
Al Arabi are placed eighth with 15 points (five victories and seven defeats) with a goal difference of -11 (12 goals for and 23 against).
Al Sadd will miss the services of captain Xavi Hernandez, who has been ruled for about a month with a torn muscle on his right foot he sustained during their QSL Cup Round 3 match against Al Sailiya that ended in a 3-3 draw last week.
However, they have the likes of Akram Afif, Baghdad Bounedjah, Hassan Al Haydous and Salem Al Hajri in their ranks.
Al Arabi will be without Abdulla Marafy and Iraqi recruit Ahmed Ibrahim is a doubtful starter, both due to injuries.
But The Dream Team will mainly have the services of Mohammed Salah El Neel, Mailson Farias, Diego Jardel, Franco Hurtado and Ahmed Fathy.
Al Sadd have played two matches less due to their engagements in the AFC Champions League, where they lost out to Iran’s Persepolis in the semifinals.
The Wolves’ Week 5 game against Al Khor has been rescheduled for 28th November and Week 9 fixture against leaders and holders Al Duhail will be played on 11th December.
Al Sadd had beaten Al Arabi 10-1 when they faced off in the first leg of QNB Stars League.