DUBAI // Al Wasl can spend the two-week Pro League break looking down on the rest of the table from top spot. Wasl, the surprise team of the early stages of the season, claimed their fourth victory of the campaign to take their tally to 12 points, one more than Al Jazira, after a 4-0 demolition of Al Shabab in front of a crowd of 3,270 mostly Wasl fans, at the Maktoum bin Rashid Stadium last night.
Alexander Oliveira, who opened the scoring, also completed the rout with his second goal in added time. Francisco Yeste and Saeed al Kas, who replaced Yeste 15 minutes from time because of an injury to the Spaniard, scored the other goals. Sergio Farias, the Brazilian coach of Wasl, chose to stay on the attack rather than consolidate a 2-0 lead when he brought on al Kas, the former UAE international forward. And it paid off as Shabab caved in during the final minutes.
Wasl were two up at the break and Shabab pressed hard on the resumption, but they were just not good enough to break down the visitors' defence. Shabab enjoyed both possession and territory, yet they failed to put any real pressure on Majed Nasser, the Wasl and national team goalkeeper. Yeste was the stand-out player, particularly in the first half. The Spaniard doubled his team's lead from a 30-yard free-kick after setting up Oliveira to open the scoring in the 14th minute.
Hassan al Sharif cleared a dipping free kick from Yeste into the path of Oliveira, and the Brazilian striker headed the ball hard towards the ground. As he tried to clear the ball off the line, Walid Abbas could only get the faintest of touches with his head.
The result was the ball bouncing briefly out of the goalmouth, before spinning back over the line, to Shabab's horror. Yeste, the 10-year veteran of Spanish football, had also put Maher Jassim through one-on-one with the Shabab goalkeeper, but the Wasl winger fluffed his chance with a weak shot from close range.
Shabab's best chance came two minutes from time when Mohammed Ahmed's powerful strike crashed against the near post, before Wasl's late strikes added gloss to the scoreline. . email@example.com