ACL 2019 Round of 16 First Leg – West: Toyota Player of the Week
Kuala Lumpur: Birthday boy Bafetimbi Gomis has been named the Toyota Player of the Week after scoring a hat-trick in Al Hilal’s 4-2 victory against domestic rivals Al Ahli on Tuesday.
Gomis, who celebrated his 34th birthday on Tuesday, twice levelled proceedings before putting his side in front midway through the second half to stun the home crowd into silence.
The Frenchman, who scored his treble from just four efforts on goal, was also awarded a rating of 9.4 to mean he won the weekly accolade by some distance.
Second in this week’s rankings was Al Duhail forward Youssef Msakni, who was playing his first game in this year’s Continental competition after returning from a loan spell in Belgium.
The influential Tunisian thumped home the equaliser against Al Sadd shortly before half-time in a 1-1 draw as he proved there remains room for optimism after the departures of Youssef El Arabi and Shoya Nakajima.
In addition to his goal, Msakni made 32 passes, created one chance and scored a rating of 7.8 as the contest was left on a knife edge ahead of next week’s second leg.
Rounding off the top three of the Toyota Player of the Week is Abdulfattah Asiri (below, left), who earned a commendable 7.5 rating despite Al Ahli’s 4-2 defeat.
The Saudi Arabia international burst down the left to tee up Omar Al Soma’s early opener at King Abdullah Sports City before threading a perfectly weighted through-ball for Djaniny to net the Jeddah side’s second.
Asiri created a weekly high six chances for his teammates in just 66 minutes on the pitch and, if Al Ahli are to make an unlikely comeback, the 25-year-old will surely have a huge role to play in Riyadh.
Prolific Al Nassr striker Abderrazak Hamdallah comes in at fourth after scoring his second AFC Champions League goal of the campaign with an eye-pleasing diving header. The Moroccan had three shots on goal, made 21 passes and also scored a rating of 7.5.
Completing the top five with a 7.2 rating is Al Soma after the Syrian striker netted his seventh of the campaign to give Al Ahli the perfect start against their Saudi rivals.
A sumptuous free-kick helped see Zobahan’s Ghasem Hadadifar come in at sixth with a 7.1 rating, while Al Ittihad’s Luis Jimenez and Al Duhail’s Edmilson Junior – who both scored 6.9 ratings – round off the top eight.