x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Six-week lull ending soon with most clubs facing a glut of fixtures

The majority of the UAE's top-flight clubs are being forced to play three matches over a 12-day period next month.

After no games in more than six weeks, the Pro League is facing a fixture pile-up with 10 of the 12 top-flight clubs being forced to play three matches over a 12-day period next month.

Two clubs, Al Wahda and Al Ahli, will not play on December 12-13, the new dates for round nine, because of Wahda's participation in the Club World Cup.

Wahda open that tournament on December 8 against Hekari United of Papua New Guinea. Round 10 of the Pro League is now scheduled for December 19, with all 12 teams set to play the day after the Club World Cup final, which Wahda are not expected to reach.

Round 11 is scheduled just four days later, with every team playing on December 23 to complete the first half of the 2010/11 season, aside, perhaps, from Wahda and Ahli, whose December 13 match has not yet been rescheduled.

Al Jazira were leading the competition when it went on hold after the October 27 matches. The long break was due, league officials said, to so many top Emirati players being absent at the Asian Games, which ended on Thursday, and the Gulf Cup, which is still in the group phase in Yemen.

Jazira, chasing their first league championship, were unbeaten and had 20 points from eight matches. Baniyas were second on 18 points, followed by Al Wasl on 16 and Wahda on 15.

Wahda are due back in Abu Dhabi today after 10 days' training in Egypt to prepare for the Club World Cup.

 

poberjuerge@thenational.ae