Riffa outclass Lebanon’s Nejmeh in AFC Cup
TDT | Manama
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Bahrain’s Riffa Club registered a winning start last night to their campaign in the 2023/2024 AFC Cup.
The Kingdom’s representatives outclassed Nejmeh SC of Lebanon 2-0 in both teams’ opening Group C game played at Khalifa Sports City Stadium in Isa Town.
Jassim Al Shaikh and Ali Hasan Isa were both on target for the Bahrainis, with each scoring in the first half.
Al Shaikh opened Riffa’s account in the 35th minute with a brilliant curling shot from just inside the penalty area.
He received a short pass from Isa and had teammate Komail Al Aswad unmarked to his right.
But Al Shaikh opted to take the shot himself from the edge of the box and he hit the ball into the topleft corner of goal, past Nejmeh goalkeeper Mohamad Bechara.
Isa then added Riffa’s second in the 41st minute after persistent play from his teammates.
Nejmeh failed to clear a throw-in from the right wing and the ball made its way to Vinicius Vargas on the left.
The Brazilian controlled the ball and turned to make a low pass towards the face of goal, and Isa was in the right place at the right time, needing to simply tap the ball home.
Riffa head coach Hisham Mahozi started a first 11 that included Mahmood Al Ajmi in goal, Lazar Dordevic, Sayed Mahdi Baqer, Sayed Redha Issa, Hazza Ali, Ali Haram, Al Shaikh, Mohammed Anz, Al Aswad, Vargas and Isa.
In last night’s other Group C encounter, Al Arabi of Kuwait defeated Al Zawraa SC of Iraq 2-1 in Basra.
Riffa’s next AFC Cup match will be at home once again against Zawraa on 2 October, before they fly to Kuwait City to take on Arabi on 23 October.
The Bahrainis are then set to go against Arabi on 6 November in Bahrain before facing Nejmeh on 27 November.
They complete their group campaign on 12 December away at Zawraa.