5 issues discovered from Al-Hilal’s win over SPL leaders Al-Ittihad in newest Saudi Classico
RIYADH: Al-Hilal defeated Al-Ittihad 2-1 on Tuesday night in Riyadh, a outcome that meant the leaders are beginning to look over their shoulders regardless of sustaining a wholesome lead within the Saudi Skilled League.
The Jeddah giants stay high of the desk with 54 factors from 23 video games, eight factors forward of Al-Shabab in second, and 10 away from Al-Nassr. Al-Hilal keep in fourth however at the moment are 11 factors behind the leaders with two video games in hand.
Listed here are 5 issues discovered from a vital Saudi Classico.
1. The penalty debate will go on for a very long time
After quarter-hour of motion, Al-Ittihad cleared an assault just for Gustavo Cuellar to fireside a half-volley from exterior the realm towards aim. It hit Hamdan Al-Shamrani who was on the sting of the six-yard field, seemingly however not conclusively, on the arm.
The defender’s head down as he was attempting to place his arms behind his again, however the ball hit him, and the referee pointed to the spot. Al-Hilal gamers appeared certain that it was a handball, and subsequently a penalty, whereas the guests have been equally satisfied that it was a official clearance.
After a video assistant referee evaluation, the Brazilian official upheld his choice. The talk as as to whether it was the precise one will go on for a very long time (although not a lot if Al-Ittihad go on to win the title) but it surely was most likely not conclusive sufficient for the VAR expertise to overturn the preliminary granting of the penalty. What is obvious is that Salem Al-Dawsari scored from the spot in as cool a way as is feasible.
2. Al-Ittihad should not have Al-Hilal’s energy in depth
The runaway leaders could have gained 12 out of the final 13 league video games however Tuesday’s match confirmed that they don’t have the energy in depth that Al-Hilal have, although there isn’t a disgrace in that. The primary 11 for the Tigers is robust certainly however as anticipated, they missed three influential gamers in Abderrazak Hamdallah, Ahmed Hegazy, and Igor Coronado.
Some would argue that they have been with out one of the best defender, finest playmaker, and finest striker within the league. What just isn’t debatable is that any group in Saudi Arabia, in addition to Asia, would miss such expertise. They have been additionally with out defender Omar Hawsawi, and winger Abdulrahman Al-Aboud.
Al-Hilal have some long-term absences too but additionally have a stronger squad than the Tigers. Al-Ittihad must get their stars again rapidly to assist be certain that this blip within the title race doesn’t turn into something extra critical.
3. Al-Ittihad could have been too determined
The final time that Al-Ittihad gained the title was in 2009. On the time, none would have imagined that the look forward to the following crown would have prolonged to, not less than, 2022.
Did that play on the thoughts of coach Cosmin Contra? We are going to by no means know, however after the Tigers levelled the rating on the hour because of Haroune Camara, they might have tightened issues up a bit. A draw would have been outcome for the leaders and would have ensured that Al-Hilal have been virtually out of the working and stayed 14 factors behind.
But Al-Ittihad stored pushing ahead and have been caught out. Was it due to the legacy of not profitable the championship for 13 years? It’s exhausting to say, however the coach could mirror that he may have stored issues tighter, sat a bit deeper, and performed on the counter as Al-Hilal pushed ahead. It was Al-Hilal who wanted to win this sport, not Al-Ittihad.
4. Ighalo ensures that Gomis just isn’t missed
Since arriving from Al-Shabab on the finish of January, Odion Ighalo has scored 4 objectives in 4 video games they usually have all come towards the highest three: Al-Shabab, Al-Nassr, and now Al-Ittihad.
That’s the reason followers, unhappy to say goodbye to the legendary Bafetimbi Gomis, now have a brand new hero. The Nigerian doesn’t do a lot in the best way of spectacular however simply scores objectives, necessary ones.
There didn’t appear to be a lot hazard halfway by way of the second half when he was discovered by Al-Dawsari on the sting of the realm. There have been three defenders round him, but the previous Manchester United man took two fast touches, discovered just a bit house, after which completed into the underside nook.
Maybe Marcelo Grohe bought down a bit too slowly, however the goalkeeper was most likely not anticipating a shot and positively not one with such precision. It gained the sport and has maybe finished greater than that.
5. This was the outcome the league wanted
Had Al-Ittihad gained this sport on the house of the in-form league champions then it could have been title race over. The Tigers wouldn’t simply have gone 11 factors clear with seven video games left however would have made an enormous assertion to themselves and to the remainder of the league.
To themselves, it could have been an enormous confidence enhance in what was the hardest sport remaining within the fixture record. Even a draw would have been greater than passable.
Now, nonetheless, the three groups simply behind have a sniff of a hope and it’s virtually within the palms of Al-Hilal. They could be 11 factors behind however have two video games in hand and likewise face the leaders as soon as extra. Al-Shabab in second meet Al-Ittihad on Sunday and might shut the hole to 5 factors.
Immediately it’s all trying thrilling and all of the sudden there’s a little strain on Al-Ittihad.