x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

'Fate is not in our hands anymore' says Sharjah's coach

Abdulmajeed Al Nimr acknowledges that his side have been left hoping relegation rivals Dubai and Emirates drop points

Mohamed Suroor of Sharjah is consoled by Al Ahli's Mohammad Qassim last week after the 2-1 away victory for the Dubai side which has left Sharjah on the verge of being relegated from the Pro League. Pawan Singh / The National
Mohamed Suroor of Sharjah is consoled by Al Ahli's Mohammad Qassim last week after the 2-1 away victory for the Dubai side which has left Sharjah on the verge of being relegated from the Pro League. Pawan Singh / The National

Abdulmajeed Al Nimr, the caretaker coach of Sharjah, appears resigned to seeing his side relegated from the Pro League after conceding that the club has been unable to motivated the players.

Sharjah travel to Ajman tomorrow, knowing anything less than three points tonight see them drop out of the country's elite league with a game left to play. And even so, if either Emirates or Dubai - both four points ahead in the table - win, Sharjah will be relegated regardless

"Our chances are very, very slim as our fate is not in our hands anymore. We have to depend on other results," Al Nimr said.

"We may be able to win against Ajman but we have no control on the other games. So we can only try to win and hope something good comes out from the two other games."

Their most frustrating result was the 3-0 defeat to Dubai two weeks ago after drawing with Emirates. And those two results are hurting them, according to Al Nimr.

"Nothing seems to be going in our favour," he said. "The management of Sharjah has tried everything within their means to motivate the players but it doesn't seem to have any impact on the players."

Al Nimr has the full squad at his disposal with Edino, the influential Brazilian midfielder, back in the side after missing last week's 2-1 defeat to Al Ahli because of injury.

"This game is the most important for us and we need everyone available to field the best line-up," Al Nimr said.

"On paper, we are as strong as any team in the Pro League. But we haven't had the desired results. This game against Ajman is our last hope and everyone is aware of it."

Dubai face Al Wasl at home while Emirates travel for a meeting with Al Nasr at the Al Maktoum stadium.

While Dubai and Emirates, both promoted last season, were expected to struggle, Sharjah are five-time league champions and eight-time winners of the President's Cup.

Ayman Al Ramadi, the Dubai coach, is confident of his team's chances of survival.

The Egyptian has history on his side too - Dubai have played Wasl three times this season, twice in the Etisalat Cup, winning all of them, scoring 10 and conceding just once.

"The result of the previous meeting will not matter," Al Ramadi said.

"I am confident because we have played some good games and were just unlucky to have lost some of the games that we shouldn't have.

Dubai's chances improved dramatically after they beat Sharjah

"It would shame if we don't remain in the top-flight competition after such a wonderful win," Al Ramadi said..

Dubai will hope to get something from the Wasl match as their last game is away to Al Jazira.

Emirates have the best form of the three teams in the second half of the season, having picked up 11 points from three wins and two draws.

They can also take heart from their 3-2 win over Jazira in April, a result that ended the Abu Dhabi club's hopes of retaining the league title.

apassela@thenational.ae

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