Al Wahda close gap on Al Ain with victory over Al Nasr

Martinez and Pedro strike for the Abu Dhabi side in 2-1 win

Al Wahda’s Tunisian defender Ala Zhir tussles for the ball with Al Nasr’s Sebastian Tagliabue, right, in the Adnoc Pro League at Al Maktoum Stadium on Sunday, January 8, 2022. Photo: PLC

Al Wahda overcame Al Nasr 2-1 on Sunday to keep the pressure on Adnoc Pro League leaders Al Ain.

Victory moved the Abu Dhabi club up to second spot and closed the gap on Al Ain, who suffered their first defeat of the season on the previous night at Sharjah, to six points.

Fabio Martinez put the visitors ahead on 18 minutes and Nasr’s Portuguese midfielder Toze levelled the scores nine minutes before half time.

Joao Pedro regained the lead for Wahda on the hour with a brilliant effort. The Brazilian forward picked up a pass from Omar Khrbin and sliced through the Nasr defence before finishing off with a right-foot shot.

“That was a nice way to end the first half of the league and keep the pressure on Al Ain,” said Wahda captain Ismail Matar said.

“We are not thinking about the league title yet. We are only at the halfway stage but the objective obviously is to keep winning every game we play and then we’ll see if we got a chance.”

Khalid Al Darmaki scored a late equaliser for Al Dhafra to return with a point from Al Orooba at the Fujairah stadium in the other game on the night.

The Dhafra defender darted across the front to head home a long ball from Khalid Al Zaabi to deny Al Orooba a second win in 13 games.

The home side took the lead through Ali Madan. The Bahraini winger collected a poor clearance from the Dhafra area and sent a low shot to the right corner of the net for a 67th minute lead.

“We can take the draw as a good result because we were on the brink until the last few minutes of the match,” Al Darmaki said.

“For us, every single point matter as we want to finish as high as possible in the league table. Tonight, I’m glad I was able to score for our team to return with a point.”

Updated: January 10th 2022, 5:58 AM