x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Diaky's focus turns to title race as Yeste hopes to stay

Al Jazira captain says team will try to keep title race alive by beating league leaders Al Ain on Friday, while the Spaniard hopes Baniyas offer him a new deal.

Al Jazira's Diaky Ibrahim Amuah, left, celebrates his goal against Al Rayyan with teammate Bare during the second half of their AFC Champions League match at Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on March 20, 2012. Christopher Pike / The National
Al Jazira's Diaky Ibrahim Amuah, left, celebrates his goal against Al Rayyan with teammate Bare during the second half of their AFC Champions League match at Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on March 20, 2012. Christopher Pike / The National

ABU DHABI // For Ibrahim Diaky, the Al Jazira captain, a second President's Cup final triumph was sweeter than the club's maiden victory last year.

"Winning the cup for the first time for Jazira had its moment but winning it for a second time is just amazing," he said.

"It has been a terrific five days for us so far. We qualified for the second round of the Asian Champions League and have now won the President's Cup. Hopefully we can win our next match against Al Ain on Friday to keep the interest in the Pro League alive.

"This was our best chance to win a trophy and we are very happy we achieved our objective of winning at least one of the two titles we won last season.

"The pressure was on us after it became more difficult to win the league.

"We are still not out of the league race, mathematically. Our next task would be to win the next match with Al Ain.

"Still we may not be able to retain the league but at least we can make the competition more interesting for the remainder of the competition."

Francisco Yeste, the Baniyas midfielder, said he wanted to remain at Baniyas next season despite the defeat.

"We were unlucky tonight," the Spaniard, who joined them during the January transfer window on a six-month contract, said.

"We had our chances to score but that didn't happen. It was like one of those days when nothing goes right for you. I think we still gave Jazira a good run.

"I have enjoyed the little time I have had at Baniyas, more than the time I spent at Al Wasl. I want to continue with a team that I know has the potential to win major titles. But it is up to the club to decide if they want me to stay.

"They haven't discussed an extension yet. I still have two months left of my contract, so fingers crossed."

 

apassela@thenational.ae

Calderon left fuming, s4-5