We’re looking to beat Al Duhail and qualify for Qatar Cup final: Al Gharafa coach Jokanovic


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Al Gharafa coach Slavisa Jokanovic and player Moaed Hassan spoke to the media ahead of their 2021 Qatar Cup semifinal against Al Duhail.

“Facing Al Duhail in the 2021 Qatar Cup semifinal will be exciting. It’s an opportunity to reach the final of the tournament and be crowned the champions. Al Duhail have made a strong comeback recently, therefore playing against them won’t be easy at all. Although we weren’t at our best level in the last match against Al Sailiya in the league, this match is a good opportunity to compensate for that poor show and provide better results and qualify for the final.

“In the Al Sailiya match, my team paid the price for the mistakes it made and there was no strong reaction to it. But the situation is different in the Al Duhail match as it’s a completely different tournament from the league. Our goal during the match will be to restrict Al Duhail and take advantage of their weaknesses in order to get a good result in our favour.

“In football, you see a lot of drama unfold, so whatever the difference in the level of two rivals, no one can predict the result. Al Duhail possess a very strong attack and can present a balanced level in all departments of the game. So, we must be careful and double our efforts in order to achieve victory.

“It (getting new players) is directly related to the strategy of the club in general and the efforts are always on to strengthen the team. We’re working to develop the team from one match to another and from week to week,” said Jokanovic.

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We’re trying to be back on podiums: Al Gharafa player Moaed

Moaed said, “We need such a tournament to return to our previous era of dominance and ascend to the winners’ podium once more. The match is important for both teams and I expect it’ll be a lot different from our league season. Our team wants to be playing in the Amir Cup and AFC Champions League regularly and thus winning against Al Duhail and reaching the final will greatly boost our morale.

“This match is a strong incentive for players to aim for title wins again. Our coach has contributed a lot to the development of many players like Amro Seraj, Homam Al Ameen, Ahmed Al Janahi and many others.”