Al Ahly

Weekend Guide 6.11.2015

In these rainy cold days, only football can keep you warm and cozy. This weekend we have the Asian Champions League final, a close race in Bosnia i Herzegovina and the start of the Lebanese league.

(All the hours are in CET local time)

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What? Al Ahly – Guangzhou Evergrande (AFC Champions League)

When? Saturday, 1645

Where? Al-Rashid Stadium, Dubai

Why? It's the time to decide which team is the best in the Asian football. Al Ahly will host the first leg of the final, while Guangzhou will host the second leg two weeks later. Al Ahly can be the first Emirati club to win the title since Al Ain in 2003, while Guangzhou Evergrande will try to win their second title in three years.

Key Players: Despite all the Brazilian expensive players on the squad, the best Al Ahly player in this campaign was the local Ahmed Khalil, with 6 goals and 4 assists, including some decisive goals in the knockout. Gouangzhou Evergrande top player is Ricardo Goulart, the tournament top scorer with 8 goals and the main figurer in the last Chinese title of Guangzhou.

Last Train to the Final: Al Ahly was almost eliminated, as in the semi final second leg the result was 2:2 and Al Hilal from Saudi Arabia was about to qualify by away goals. Dramatic goal in the 95th minute of the Korean Kwon Kyung-Won led Al Ahly all the way to the final.

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What? Sloboda Tuzla – Zrinjski (Premijer liga Bosne i Hercegovine)

When? Sunday, 1330

Where? Stadion Tušanj, Tuzla

Why? Take a look on the Bosnian league table. Zrinjski leading the table with 30 points and then there are three teams, all with 28 points. Sloboda is among them. While Zrinjski know how it feels to win the title, Sloboda will try to make a step towards their first title ever.

Key Players: Sloboda have the league’s top scorer, Mersudin Ahmetović, who came back to his former team after 7 years in Russia and Belarus. Zrinjski conceded only 4 goals in 14 matches, and they will thank Goran Karačić, the 19 years old goalkeeper who already played for the U21 Bosnia national team.

Lucky Losers: Zrinjski have similar story to the one we had last week. In 2008 UEFA Cup, they met Partizan Belgrade and defeated by aggregate score of 1:11. Zrinjski still qualified, as UEFA decided to expel Partizan after crowd troubles in Mostar.

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What?Al Ahed – Racing (Lebanese Premier League)

When? Sunday, 1530

Where? Beirut Municipal Stadium, Beirut

Why? The Lebanese league started just few weeks ago, and every team wants to have another win. Al Ahed, the reigning champions, already lost their opening match, but won their next two games, are holding the 2nd place carefully. Racing wants to have close title race, all the way to first title since 1970. They are in 4th place, equaled to Al Ahed by points.

Key Players: One of the greatest players in Al Ahed is Abbas Ali Atwi, who plays for the team since 2005 and made 42 international caps. In Racing you can find Octavian Drăghici, which left the lower leagues of Romania for the first time after 12 years.

Lebanese Diaspora: While the Lebanese players are not well known in the history of the football, there are still some players with Lebanese roots such as the legendary Faryd Mondragon and the current Mexican superstar, Miguel Layún.

Weekend Guide 20.8.2015

The weekend is here and we have three great matches for you. For the beginners, we have a great Hungarian match. For the more experienced visitors, we have a North African derby in the CAF Confederations Cup. Our Baba-Addicts will have a special match, classic match with lot of passion from El Salvador.

(All the hours are in CET local time)

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What? Debrecen – Ferencváros (Hungarian Nemzeti Bajnokság I)

When? Saturday, 2030

Where? Nagyerdei Stadion, Debrecen

Why? An insane opening for the season led Ferencváros to the 1st place with 5 wins out of 5 matches. The club dreams about a first title since 2004. Their opponents, Debrecen, are one of the expected contenders for the title, are in 4th place.

Key Players: Debrecen's forward, Geoffrey Castillion, who was part of Ajax youth teams but failed to reach the senior team, and now he plays in Hungary after great season in Romania. Ferencváros’ Dániel Böde is one of the best scorers in the league at the moment, with 6 goals so far.

Special figure: Brazilian midfielder Leandro played 4 years for Ferencváros and 3 more years in Debrecen, before he left to Cyprus. He became a Hungarian citizen and made 13 caps for the national team. After 5 years, he returned in the last summer to Ferencváros.

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Espérance de Tunis – Al Ahly (CAF Confederations Cup)

When? Saturday, 2000

Where? Stade Olympique de Radès, Radès

Why? Two former African Champions League winners will play in order to clinch a semifinal spot. For Espérance it's the last chance to stay in the race. Al Ahly will have to win in order to complete their task in their title defending journey.

Key Players: Espérance leader is Hocine Ragued, the French-Tunisian midfielder who arrived in Tunisia after playing in Belgium, Czech Republic and Turkey. The star of Al Ahly is Emad Moteab, who score the winning goal in the last CAF Confederations Cup final.

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What? Águila – Alianza (Salvadoran Primera División)

When? Sunday, 0300

Where? Estadio Juan Francisco Barraza, San Miguel

Why? El Clásico Centro Oriente, the mid-east classic of El Salvador.

After 4 games, Águila are leading the table with 10 points. Alianza are in the 3rd place with 8 points. Moreover, both teams are the only who haven't lost yet.

Key Players: Take a look on Deris Umanzor, the 35 years old defender of Águila, who plays in Águila for the ninth season and made a short travel for the MLS. Alianza will be led by Rodolfo Zelaya, 27 years old striker, who is one of the well-known Salvadoran players today.

Special Figure: Mario Mayén Meza was one of the greatest names in El Slavador's football during the 90's. He won three national titles in Alianza, and three more in Águila. He played also for FAS, which means he played for 3 out of the 4 big clubs in the country. Bravo loco!