x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Vieira ditched by Baniyas after winless run

Fans demonstrated after loss to to Al Jazira, the Brazilian had overseen just two draws but rarely had full strength team.

Jorvan Vieira was winless after seven games as head coach of Baniyas.
Jorvan Vieira was winless after seven games as head coach of Baniyas.

ABU DHABI // Baniyas have parted company with Jorvan Vieira, the Brazilian coach, after seven games without a win in all competitions.

The last straw for club officials was the 3-1 away defeat to Al Jazira, the champions, in the Pro League on Friday. The announcement was made last night.

"The club management has terminated his services and the youth team coach and technical director Salem Al Orafi will be in charge as caretaker," said the club spokesman Musaad Al Harthi.

Vieira, 58, was signed on a two-year contract at the end of last season. He took charge of the struggling Kalba towards the end the 2010/11 season, but failed to guide them to safety despite overseeing 11 of the team's 17 points.

Towards the end of the Jazira defeat, in which Baniyas could consider themselves unlucky not to salvage a draw, a section of the small travelling support unveiled a banner telling Vieira to "go home".

When asked about the fans reaction, Vieira, who led Iraq to a shock Asian Cup win in 2007, said: "They are fans and they want to see us the club winning," he said. "It is a pressure job for all football coaches and I am aware of it. If the club management wants me to leave that's fine by me.

"But I would like to tell the fans to be patient. We have had a poor start but one point from three [league] games is nothing. But again, if the club management is not satisfied with my work they have every right to ask me to leave."

Vieira's side have managed only two draws against Ajman - one in the Etisalat Cup and one in the Pro League - in seven games.

However, Baniyas were never at full strength in the four Etisalat Cup games that preceded the league season. Six of their players were on national duty with the senior and the Olympic team.

It has also been a difficult period for Baniyas after one of their star players, Theyab Awana, was killed in a car accident on September 25. Andre Senghor, last season's top scorer, was late reporting for pre-season training while David Trezeguet, their marquee summer signing, has yet to reach full fitness.

"The club management thought it was better to terminate his services now than leave it late," said Al Harthi.

Wasl ‘satisfied’ with Puch

Edson Puch, Al Wasl’s Chile midfielder, could come into contention for Thursday’s Pro League match against champions Al Jazira after he returned to training last night after going missing last week. Ahmed Khalifa, a club spokesman, said: “It was just a misunderstanding. The player has explained ... the reason for his absence and we are satisfied with his explanation.” Puch failed to turn up for training ahead of the 1-1 draw at Ajman.

UAE team to play F1 drivers

Walter Zenga and David Trezeguet have been included in the Pro League squad to play a team of Formula One drivers in a charity football match at Al Jazira’s Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium on November 9. They will be on a team of UAE players and celebrities who will take on a team of 15 current and former Formula One drivers, known as Nazionale Piloti. They have never participated in this sort of event outside of Europe.

Shabab keep up with rivals

Al Shabab joined three other teams level on seven points at the top of the Pro League, after a hard-fought 2-0 win over Dubai rivals Al Ahli. Walid Abbas, the Shabab captain, opened the scoring early with a header. Then, with seven minutes left, Abbas handled Luis Jimenez’s free kick in the area. Grafite, the Brazilian forward, missed the penalty, Shabab went straight up the other end and Ciel scored. Abbas was then sent off for a second yellow.