10 Sep 2017 - 0:00
Al Sadd are Sheikh Jassim Cup champions
By Armstrong Vas / The Peninsula
A hat-trick from Algerian international Baghdad Bounedjah helped Emir Cup winners Al Sadd beat QNB Stars League champions Al Duhail 4-2 on way to lifting the Sheikh Jassim Cup at the Al Duhail Stadium yesterday.
The 25-year-old Bounedjah struck telling blows in the 5th, 20th and 67th minute to complete his three-in-a-row feat and give the Wolves their first silverware of the season in the one-match season-opener.
Nam Tae-Hee pulled one back for Duhail in the 41st minute and Almoez Ali struck in injury added time to make it 4-2, in between Jugurtha Hamroun took the match away from Al Duhail by scoring in the 80th minute to pave way for the title.
Bounedjah was delighted with splendid showing in the Sheikh Jassim Cup final.
“I am delighted with this win and the hat-trick. The match was difficult but we managed to give our best from the beginning and took a two-goal lead early on, using the instructions of the coach.”
“In the second half, we decided to close down in defence and depend on counter attacks, which helped us score another two goals. This win is dedicated to the Al Sadd fans who helped us greatly in this match” he added.
Al Sadd took the lead early on with a 5th minute strike from Baghdad Bounedjah, who finished off a through ball from Jugurtha Hamroun. Hamroun could have made it 2-0 in the 13th minute but his strike was kept out by Al Duhail keeper Khalifa Abubakar for a corner.
The second goal was in the offing and it didn’t take too long for Al-Sadd to double their lead. This time it was Xavi who slid a through ball to Bounedjah who scored with aplomb, in a similar manner to his first goal.
Al Duhail then went on to dominate proceedings after that, looking to get back into the match. Al Sadd took a balanced approach, alternating between offence and defence. In the 36th minute, Bounedjah had an opportunity to score but the Algerian’s effort was palmed away by Abubakar.
In the 41st minute, Al Duhail’s Korean playmaker Nam Tae Hee scored to make it 2-1 after a mistake from Khoukhi Boualem. Al Duhail kept trying to score another goal but Al Sadd managed to maintain the scoreline up until the halftime whistle.
Both sides started the second half in an exciting fashion, showing attacking intent from the beginning. In the 67th minute, Bounedjah went on to complete his hattrick with another goal and another assist from Xavi to make the score 3-1.
In the 80th minute, Hamroun converted a penalty to score Al Sadd’s fourth. The spot kick was awarded after a foul on Bounedjah, who was substituted by Saoud Al Nasr after picking up a knock. Al Sadd then held on until the final few minutes when Almoez Ali scored for Al Duhail.
It would only prove to be a consolation goal and Al Sadd went on to confirm victory and the Sheikh Jassim Cup with a 4-2 margin.