Football

QNB Stars League Week 6 – Al Sadd 6 Al Gharafa 4

Reigning champions Al Sadd beat Al Gharafa 6-4 in a 10-goal thriller in Week 6 of the 2021-2022 season QNB Stars League at the Al Gharafa Stadium on Sunday.

Baghdad Bounedjah (seventh and 51st minutes), Hassan Al Haydous (14th and 40th minutes) and Andrew Ayew (89th minute) scored the goals for Al Sadd, who benefited from an own goal from Al Gharafa’s Saifeldeen Fadlalla in the 17th minute.

Despite being under pressure, Al Gharafa fought back gallantly as Cheick Diabate (21st and 45th minutes), Saifeldeen Fadlalla (29th minute) and Ahmed Alaaeldin (57th minute) scored for them.

Al Sadd raised their score to 18 points from six victories (all-win record), while Al Gharafa remained on nine points.

In the sixth minute, Algerian striker Bounedjah worked his way past an Al Gharafa defender, but his shot close to the edge of the box sailed above the crossbar.

But a minute later, Bounedjah – after receiving a cross from Rodrigo Tabata - outpaced Almahdi Ali and charged into the Al Gharafa box. Just as keeper Yousef Hassan stepped away to block the move, he clipped the ball into the net.

It was not too long that Al Sadd jumped to a 2-0 lead. Al Haydous – on the right flank – clipped in a cross for his forwards but his shot got deflected by marker Saeed El Hajj’s foot. The ball looped high above and dropped over the head of the Al Gharafa keeper and crashed into the net.

Three minutes later, Al Haydous was in the Al Gharafa box, but his cross for a team-mate was deflected into the goal by Al Gharafa’s Under-19 player Fadlalla for an own goal.

Al Gharafa then put an end to the Al Sadd goal glut as Diabate – after receiving a short cross inside the box – drilled the ball into the net from close range.

Close to the half-hour mark, the match witnessed the fifth goal when Fadlalla  compensated for his lapse by slotting the ball into the Al Sadd net when Sofiane Hanni’s penalty kick was saved by keeper Meshaal Barsham.

Al Sadd jumped to a 4-2 lead after Al Haydous drilled the ball from the edge of the Al Gharafa box into the net following an assist from Akram Afif.

Five minutes later, Diabate – after receiving a cross from Hanni close to the half-line – charged ahead solo. Following a long run, Diabate easily slotted the ball past the Al Sadd keeper.

Before the close of first half, Al Sadd’s Ali Asad scored with a left-footed drive from close range, but it was disallowed following a VAR review.

An Al Haydous-Bounedjah 1-2 saw the latter score his second of the match as Al Sadd went 5-3 up.

Al Gharafa’s Alaaeldin tapped the ball into the net from close range after a long cross by Fadlalla to make it 4-5 for his side.

Ayew added to Al Sadd’s bulging tally when he scored from close range late into the game.

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