Round 17 is in the books of this season’s QSL, and the table is now starting to take shape with just a handful of games left in the season. Here is a quick recap from an exciting week 17 round of fixtures.
Al-Duhail, who are having a fine season, managed to keep the gap to top side Al-Sadd to seven points after a convincing 4-0 away victory at Al-Rayyan. It was Korean Nam Tae-hee who got things off to the perfect start, opening the scoring after just 22 minutes. Al-Duhail would go in at halftime 2-0 up thanks to the league’s top scorer Michael Olunga finding the back of the net in the 41st minute.
Further goals from Olunga and a first of the season for Mohammed Musa rounded off a comfortable victory.
Al Sadd continued their march towards a third league title in four years following a convincing win against Al-Gharafa. Against an Al-Gharafa side who have Champions League qualifying aspirations of their own, Al Sadd got off to the perfect start, finding the back of the net after just two minutes through Abdelkarim Hassan.
The game was then changed thanks to a straight red card for Al Sadd’s Akram Afif in just the 13th minute. Despite playing with 10 men, Rodrigo Tabata doubled Al Sadd’s lead in the 25th minute. Al-Gharafa would fail to take advantage of the extra man, with further goals from Santi Cazorla and two from Ghana captain André Ayew condemning the home side to a 1-5 defeat.
Al-Wakrah managed to maintain their grip on the final AFC Champions League place thanks to a 2-1 victory over bottom side Al-Sailiya. Two quick goals in the 33rd and 35th minutes from Gelson Dala and Mohamed Benyettou looked to have wrapped up the points, before defender Mohamed Aiash conceded a penalty and got sent off just before halftime. Driss Fettouhi stroked home the penalty, giving Al-Sailiya real hope of getting back into the game.
Al-Sailiya huffed and puffed in the second half, but the league’s bottom side just couldn’t find that all-important equalizer.
In a fiery encounter that saw four first-half yellow cards, it was Qatar SC who got off to the dream start with a goal in just the second minute by Sebastián Soria. Soria would then go on to double Qatar’s lead in the 39th minute, netting from the penalty spot.
Despite dominating possession, the home side couldn’t find a way back into the match. They managed to ensure that we were set for a tense finale after Isael managed to find the back of the net in the 88th minute, but it was a case of too little too late as Qatar would go on to record one of their finest wins of the season.
Al Ahli Doha managed to beat 11th-place Al-Khor 6-3. The win for Al Ahli Doha created an eight-point gap between the sides towards the bottom of the table.
In a game that rained goals, it was the away side who got the scoring underway thanks to a goal from Ahmed Hassan Al Mohanadi. The home side would muster the perfect response by scoring three quick goals, which saw them head into the halftime break leading 3-1.
Al-Khor would immediately hit back at the start of the second half to make it 3-2 thanks to a goal from Pierre-Michel Lasogga, but it was two goals from Al Dokali Al Sayed and Abdulrahman Al-Harazi in the space of eight minutes that clinched the victory for the home side. Leading 5-2, Juma Al-Habsi scored for the away side to make it 5-3, but the game was over after Hossein Kanaani netted in the 91st minute to give Al Ahli Doha a crucial win.
In an intriguing battle between two teams at opposite ends of the league table, it was Al Arabi who kept their Champions League qualification hopes firmly alive by beating relegation-threatened Al-Shamal 4-2.
In a match that saw four first-half goals, both teams headed for halftime locked in a 2-2 draw. The fifth goal was always going to be crucial, and it arrived quickly after halftime with Ahmed Suhail scoring for Al Arabi in the 51st minute. The game was then wrapped up 10 minutes later as Aaron Boupendza scored his second of the game to clinch a 4-2 victory. Victory for the home side leaves them just five points behind the current occupants of the final Champions League spot, Al-Wakrah. Al-Shamal remain in 10th spot, just two points above Al-Khor, who lie in the relegation playoffs spot.