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Faisali secure football league title with weeks to spare

Ahli, Baqaa strive to keep spot in pro league

By Aline Bannayan - May 08,2019 - Last updated at May 08,2019

AMMAN — While the final week of the Jordan Professional Football League will see Faisali being crowned champions, the league’s 22nd week will see another battle at the other end of standings.

Faisali play Jazira, who have secured the runner-up spot, while titleholders Wihdat who played Ramtha late Wednesday, have settled for third.

However, it is the Ahli against Baqaa match on Thursday evening which is decisive. Ahli need to win to keep their spot in the league while Baqa’a just need a draw. That Ras have already dropped to the First Division.

During the past week, Faisali beat Baqaa 1-0, Jazira scored a big 4-0 win over Shabab Urdun, who took fourth spot, Ramtha beat 5th placed Salt 3-2, Wihdat beat That Ras 4-0, Ahli defeated Hussein 2-1, while Sarih moved up to seventh after they held Aqaba 0-0.

After a tough season, Ramtha and Aqaba maintained their spot in the elite group, but That Ras, a previous Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup participant and Jordan Cup champ in 2012, were the first to drop. Ahli, who were relegated last decade, but came back in impressive form and won the Jordan Cup in 2015 and played in the AFC, also seem poised to drop unless they win their last match.

The 2018/19 football season kicked off with league champs Wihdat beating Jordan Cup champs Jazira in the 36th Jordan Super Cup. The Jordan Cup quarters are set for next week.

Regionally, Wihdat were knocked out of the 2018/19 AFC Champions League preliminary round.  In the AFC Cup, the second-tier Asian club competition, Jazira and Wihdat are impressive with two more round to go. 

Wihdat beat Lebanon’s Nijmeh 2-0 to take their Group A lead while Jazira moved to the next round after they trounced Bahrain’s Najma 3-0 in stage 5 of the AFC Cup.

Last season, Wihdat won the league.  Faisali  won the 35th Jordan Super Cup and Wihdat won the Jordan Football Association Shield. Jazira finished runner-up in the league, but won the 38th Jordan Cup after they last won the Jordan Cup in 1984. 

Since the league kicked off in 1944, Faisali are record 34-time winners, while Wihdat were crowned champs 16 times since they joined in 1980.

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