Sharjah got their Adnoc Pro League campaign off to the perfect start with a 2-0 away victory over Shabab Al Ahli at the Rashid Stadium in Dubai on Saturday.
Luan Pereira was on target with an early goal to set the platform for the visitors before Portuguese forward Francisco Alcacer sealed the game deep into injury time.
Ousmane Camara set up the opening goal when he ran down the right flank and sent a low cross for the Brazilian midfielder to fire in a first time curling effort for an eighth-minute lead.
Camara found the back of the net in the 17th minute, but the goal was disallowed after the VAR referral deemed the Guinean forward was offside.
Shabab Al Ahli had their moments to level the score, with Azizjon Ganiev coming closest with a free kick. The Uzbek midfielder’s effort crashed against the crossbar after a good attempt to push the ball out by Sharjah goalkeeper Mohammed Darwish in the first half.
Alcacer sealed the game for last season’s league runners-up after Ebrahim Al Dhanhani fed Camara with a through pass, and the Guinean drew out keeper Hassan Hamza Ali, to set up the Portuguese to fire it in to an empty net.
In the other matches on the night, Ali Mabkhout was on target twice in Al Jazira’s 2-0 win over promoted Dibba at the Mohamed bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, while Al Dhafra held Al Nasr to a 1-1 stalemate at the Hamdan bin Zayed Stadium.
Mabkhout found the back of the net with a clinical finish from a Florin Tanase cross in the 11th minute and doubled the lead from the penalty spot on 27 minutes.
At Dhafra, Khalid Al Darmaki broke the deadlock to put the hosts in front in the 63rd minute but their joy was short-lived as Dembo Darboe levelled nine minutes later.