Matchday Four: West Zone Preview
Kuala Lumpur: The teams in the West Zone of the 2019 AFC Cup will return to action in the coming week with five matches to be played over Monday and Tuesday.
The four sides in Group B will kick off the action on Monday, before the teams in Groups A and C take to the field a day later in what will be the fourth round of fixtures.
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AL Jazeera will move a step closer to the knockout rounds should the Jordanian team make it back-to-back wins over Syria’s Al Ittihad following their 4-0 victory on Matchday Three.
The Amman side top the standings and are unbeaten on seven points, while Al Ittihad are currently propping up the table on just one point and would be all but eliminated if they lose.
Defender Zaid Jaber misses out through suspension for Al Jazeera, who are looking to make the West Asia Zonal semi-finals for the second successive year.
Elsewhere, three-time winners Kuwait SC host Bahrain’s Al Najma, with both teams currently locked on four points and attempting to stay within striking distance of the group leaders.
Shaheen Al Khamees scored deep into stoppage time two weeks ago as the Kuwaiti side secured their first win of the campaign following a 1-0 victory over Monday’s opponents.
Al Ittihad (SYR) vs Al Jazeera (JOR)
Venue: Al Nahyan Stadium, Abu Dhabi
Kick-off: April 15, 19:30 UTC+4
Kuwait SC (KUW) vs Al Najma (BHR)
Venue: Kuwait Sports Club Stadium, Kuwait City
Kick-off: April 15, 18:50 UTC+3
Syria’s Al Jaish will look to extend their lead at the top of Group A when they visit second-placed Al Wehdat of Jordan on Tuesday.
Ahmad Ashkar’s second-half goal gave the inaugural AFC Cup winners a 1-0 victory over the Jordanian team two weeks ago as they moved a point ahead of Tuesday’s opponents in the standings.
A win would see Al Wehdat, who are without the suspended Hamza Al Dardour for the third successive game, return to the top of the table with two games to play.
The game between the other two teams in the group, Lebanon’s Nejmeh and Palestine’s Hilal Al Quds, has been postponed and will be played at a later date.
Al Wehdat (JOR) vs Al Jaish (SYR)
Venue: King Abdullah II Stadium, Amman
Kick-off:April 16, 19:00 UTC+3
Bahrain’s Malkiya Club will aim to maintain their lead at the top of Group C when they welcome Kuwait’s Qadsia SC to Manama on Tuesday.
Hashim Sayed Isa scored a brace as Malkiya defeated Qadsia 2-1 two weeks ago to move three points clear of the 2014 champions and stay two in front of second-placed Al Ahed.
Malkiya are unbeaten in the 2019 campaign – their second appearance in the competition – as they target a place in the knockout rounds for the first time.
Elsewhere, Lebanon’s Al Ahed will be seeking back-to-back wins against bottom side Al Suwaiq of Oman, who are still aiming for their first point of the group stage.
Mohamad Kdouh scored a hat-trick in Al Ahed’s 4-2 win over the Omani side at the beginning of April as they picked up their first three points following successive draws.
Malkiya Club (BHR) vs Qadsia SC (KUW)
Venue: Khalifa Sports City Stadium, Manama
Kick-off: April 16, 19:00 UTC+3
Al Suwaiq (OMA) vs Al Ahed (LIB)
Venue: Seeb Sports Complex, Muscat
Kick-off: April 16, 19:30 UTC+4
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