Sharjah win President’s Cup for ninth time after beating Al Wahda 1-0

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Syed Shayaan Bakht, Staff Reporter

The Sharjah football team was crowned champion of His Highness the President’s Football Cup for the ninth time in its history, after defeating Al Wahda 1-0 on Friday.

Sharjah won the Cup in the final match that was held at Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain in the midst of a large audience of 20,000 spectators.

The Spanish Paco Alcacer scored the only goal of the match from a free kick in the 53rd minute, before he was substituted.

The “king” returned to the podium after an absence of 19 years, specifically since they won the eighth title in 2003, and interestingly enough, won that edition over Al-Wahda as well, but on penalties.

Al Wahda failed to win the third title in thier history, although they were good in the match, but paid a heavy price for not focusing on the free kick that Alcacer took.

The match started with a flurry of unity and early pressure, but the first chance was for Sharjah when the Bosnian Miralem Pjanic sent a perfect cross ball, which was met by the Spaniard Alcacer and was removed by the Brazilian Lucas Pimenita crawling into a corner.

Then the play was confined to the center of the field, and after a long period of wait that reached the 33rd minute, the most dangerous opportunity arose for Al-Wahda, but with no luck in their favour.

The first 45 minutes did not witness any chances, and it was clear that the Romanian coach Cosmin asked his players not to take offensive risks early, while the Spaniard Luis Jimenez played in an open way. But his team, from which the Brazilian Alan emerged with his combative play in the middle, erected a solid defensive wall for “the King.”

The start of the second half witnessed the participation of Guinean striker Osman Kamara as a substitute for the Bosnian Miralem Pjanic due to his lack of physical fitness, as he did not train with the team for 3 days after being injured in the Al Wasl match in the ADNOC Pro League last Sunday.

Great goal

The exit of Pjanic was a good omen for the “King”, after the referee awarded a free kick to Sharjah by the Spaniard Alcacer directly against Mohammed Al Shamsi, who accompanied it only with his eyes without any reaction in the 53rd minute.

Alcacer ran across the field after scoring the goal.

Ismail Matar tried his luck with a header, but it crossed the crossbar.

Ismail went out in the 70th minute, and Sebastian Tigali, who replaced him, almost scored at the first opportunity, but goalkeeper Darwish and then defender Shaheen intervened to eliminate the danger.

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