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Ramtha lead with 3 weeks left in Jordan Pro League

By Aline Bannayan - Sep 28,2021 - Last updated at Sep 28,2021

AMMAN — Ramtha have taken the lead in the 69th Jordan Professional Fooball League (Pro League) ahead of titleholders Wihdat as the 19th week kicks off Wednesday.

It should be a much anticipated week with Ramtha playing Faisali and Wihdat facing Hussein in key matches that will determine the lead after the past week saw Shabab Urdun’s 3-2 win over Wihdat giving Ramtha the lead following their own 1-0 win over Baqa’a.

Salt remained third after a 4-2 win over Hussein, and former champs Faisali lost the chance for a top finish after they lost 1-0 to Aqaba. Jazira stayed 7th after a 3-1 win over Ma’an. Jalil held Sahab 1-1 and are likely to be the team to be relegated together with Baqa’a.

The previous week’s matches also had a key impact on the shifting standings as Salt dropped out of the lead after losing to Wihdat while Ramtha beat Sahab and grabbed three important points, and Jazira were pushed further down the standings after losing to Faisali. 

After Faisali and Ramtha led the standings in most of Leg 1, Ramtha, Wihdat and Salt are in the top three now. Jazira, who led throughout the league in the past two seasons, but lost the title in the final weeks, find themselves midway through the standings this year. 

This season, the competition has witnessed inconsistent performances, in a season which also saw the national team eliminated from 2022 World Cup qualifiers, and now having to go through another stage of qualifying to get to the 2023 Asian Cup. Following that the squad advanced to the FIFA Arab Cup on a technicality after South Sudan was forced to forfeit its match with over six members of the squad contracting COVID-19.

So far in local competitions, a relatively unknown newcomer to the Pro League, Jalil, overcame Wihdat to win the 34th Jordan Football Association (JFA) Shield. Wihdat won their 14th title when they beat one-time winners Jazira in 38th Jordan Super Cup.

Last season, Wihdat won their 17th league title while Jazira finished runner-up, leaving Ramtha third and former champs Faisali settled for fifth after Salt. Sarih dropped alongside eight-time league champ veterans Ahli who were also relegated last decade but came back to win the Jordan Cup in 2015 and played in the AFC. Jalil and Baqa’a joined the 12-club Pro League this year.  Wihdat also won their 10th JFA Shield. Faisali overcame Jazira to win their 17th Jordan Super Cup as the Jordan Cup was scrapped from the agenda for the first time since the competition kicked off in 1980.

Jordan Cup

Meanwhile, in the Jordan Cup, Wihdat beat Jazira 2-1, Hussein ousted Aqaba 2-1 while Faisali eliminated Sahab on penalties to reach the semis. Salt who were busy with AFC Cup matches play Ma’an on October 6.

Sahab had reached the quarters after eliminating Shabab Urdun while Faisali ousted Ramtha in key matches in the Round of 16. The Jordan Cup, brought together Division 2 and 3 teams playing to advance winners who joined First Division and Pro League teams in the second stage.

Since the Cup started in 1980, there have been 39 past editions with Faisali a record 20-time champions. Wihdat won 10 times, Jazira, Ramtha and Shabab Urdun twice each, while Arabi, That Ras and Ahli won once each.

On the regional scene, Salt, who played their inaugural Asian Football Confederation Cup, were eliminated by Kuwait FC in the semifinals of the West Asia Zone while Faisali were knocked out in the group stages. Wihdat played Group D of the Asian Champions League but was knocked out in the first round.

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