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Wihdat, Jazira aim to conclude AFC Round 1 on winning note

By Aline Bannayan - May 13,2019 - Last updated at May 13,2019

AMMAN — Wihdat play Palestine’s Quds while Jazira play titleholders Kuwait Club on Tuesday in Stage 6 of the 16th Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup — the second-tier Asian club competition.

In the past stage, Wihdat beat Lebanon’s Nijmeh 2-0 to take the Group A lead and secure qualifying chances, while Jazira qualified from Group B lead and moved to the next round after they trounced Bahrain’s Najma 3-0.

In earlier matches, Jazira beat Syria’s Ittihad 2-0 and 4-0, scored a 1-0 win over Kuwait and held Najma 1-1. Wihdat were held 1-1 and lost 1-0 to Syria’s Jeish, beat Quds 6-2 and Nijmeh 1-0. 

Lebanon’s Ahed won Group C ahead of Bahrain’s Malkieh, Kuwait’s Qadissieh and Oman’s Suweiq.

The top teams from the three competing West Asian groups in addition to the best second placed team will move to the semifinal round of the zone with the winner advancing to the eventual competition final against the East Asia champ.

It has been over 12 years since Jordanian teams won the AFC Cup. Faisali won in 2005 and 2006, and Shabab Urdun won in 2007. Other Jordanian teams that participated in previous editions include Ramtha, Hussein, That Ras and Ahli. Kuwait Club and the Iraqi Air Force Club are AFC Cup record winners having been crowned champs three times each.

Last season 2017/18, Jazira were eliminated from AFC Cup West Asia zone final and failed to reach the continent’s final, while Faisali bowed out earlier in the event’s semifinals. 

In 2017, Ahli played the AFC Cup for the first time and Wihdat reached the West Asia zone semifinals. Jordanian league champs Faisali finished runner-up to Tunisia’s Tarajji in the 2017 Arab Clubs Champions Cup after an impressive performance which included two wins over Egyptian veterans Ahli. 

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