Dubai: Shabab Al Ahli Dubai will be looking to continue their dominance in Group A as they host Al Dhafrah in Round Four preliminary matches of the Arabian Gulf Cup this weekend.

The Red Knights, whose only blemish so far this season has been their tie-breaker loss to Sharjah in the Arabian Gulf Super Cup, have been in good form following two wins and a draw for their seven points in the tournament. Al Dhafrah have been competitive — to say the least — following a win and a draw for their four points before travelling to Dubai.

“Our goal is quite clear. We need to win this one too and try and book our place for the knockout stages,” Shabab Al Ahli Dubai coach Rodolfo Arruabarrena told media at the customary pre-match press conference.

“We have made a good start to the season, but we cannot just sit back and allow things to slip. We need to keep the focus and pay attention to the details so that we are more effective in our style of play,” the Argentinian coach added.

After a hard-fought 2-2 draw with Al Ain, defending champions Shabab Al Ahli Dubai hammered Al Jazira 4-0 and then tamed Al Nasr 2-0 to go on top of Group A. But teams like Al Ain, Al Jazira and Al Nasr will be on the lookout for crucial points heading into this week’s fixtures.

The encounter between Sharjah and Al Wasl on Saturday will be another keenly-watched affair with the defending league champions holding the upper hand. Al Ain too will be in action on Friday with a home game against Al Nasr, who seem to be struggling to find their rhythm.


Friday: 6.15pm: Bani Yas vs Ajman; 6.15: Khor Fakkan vs Kalba; 8.45: Al Ain vs Al Nasr

Saturday: 6.15pm: Shabab Al Ahli Dubai vs Al Dhafra; 6.15: Fujairah vs Hatta; 8.45: Sharjah vs Al Wasl.