Al Rayyan captain Fabio Cesar has fond memories of the Emir Cup and will be hoping to cherish another by lifting the prestigious trophy today, a tournament which he regards as ‘very special’.
Last season’s Heir Apparent Cup winners will face Qatar Stars League (QSL) champions Al Sadd in the 41st edition of the Emir Cup, and the Qatari is hoping to win the prestigious trophy again, after triumphing six years ago with Umm Salal.
“It is a very special tournament in my heart. I hope to finish it (the match) in a good way,” Cesar said.
When asked of his specific Emir Cup moments that he remembers, the 34-year-old cited the penalty shoot-out triumph with Umm Salal in 2008. He said: “The first Emir Cup I reached with Umm Salal was special. It was also because it was the first Emir Cup for me.”
He added with a smile: “I reached the final twice with Al Rayyan and I hope to lift it again for the team. The special one will be the next one which is hopefully on Saturday.”
The Qatari midfielder, whose side had to beat Eljaish 5-4 on penalties after it finished 1-1 in regulation time in the semi-finals, is braced for a difficult match against Al Sadd.
He said: “It will be for sure a tough match. It is the Emir Cup final against a big team (Al Sadd) but we are ready to play this game and we want to win.”
The last time the two opponents met in QSL ended on a happy note for Al Rayyan with a comprehensive 4-1 win at Al Sadd Stadium.
Despite the negative result, Al Sadd, led by former Real Madrid and Schalke 04 striker Raul regained their composure and won the QSL title in April.
The Brazilian-born midfielder insists his team needs to be wary of all players in the Al Sadd team and not just Raul and Ibrahim Khalfan, who have recently been nominated for the QFA Player of the Year Award.
He said: “We need to be wary of all the players in the Al Sadd team. They have some great players who have performed very well this season like Raul and Ibrahim Khalfan.”
After finishing fourth in the league, losing in the Heir Apparent Cup semi-finals (3-1 against Al Sadd) and failing to advance to the knock-out stages of the AFC Champions League, the ex-Napoli player insists the season will only be success if victory prevails today.
He said: “It will depend on how we finish it. We hope to finish it in a good way.”
Source : Qatar Chronicle
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