QNB Stars League Week 16 — Umm Salal 2 Al Gharafa 1


Umm Salal fought back in spectacular fashion to post a 2-1 win over Al Gharafa in Week 16 of the QNB Stars League on Thursday.

Al Gharafa’s Ahmed Alaaeldin produced two goal-scoring opportunities in the first 20 minutes of the match played at the Al Gharafa Stadium. On one occasion, he almost scored from close range, but Umm Salal keeper Basel Zaidan palmed the ball away in the 20th minute.

Al Gharafa’s Saeed Hajj was sent off in the 32nd minute by referee Saoud Ali Al Athba, who referred to VAR to make his call. Saeed, in an effort to clear a loopy cross, ended up hitting his spikes on Mahmoud Mawas’ right leg and that resulted in a cut on his right leg.

Moments later, Umm Salal’s Ismail Dahqani brought down Mehdi Taremi with a rough tackle as intense battle for ball possession continued.

A few seconds on, Al Gharafa captain Fahd Al Shammari fired the ball into the net off an indirect free-kick that resulted from the foul on Taremi. The goal was scored in the 39th minute. Just when it seemed the first half would be goalless, Fahd found the net with a fast flick into the top of the Umm Salal goal.

In the 68th minute, Mawas produced a header from close range off a loopy cross, but Al Gharafa keeper Yousef Hassan palmed the ball away with a slick save.

Umm Salal struck back twice in the space of seven minutes. Dheyab Annabi netted the equaliser in the 72nd minute and then Anderson Benedito fired the winner in the 70th as The Orange Fortress turned the game in their favour.