Al Rayyan vs Al Ain
Competition: AFC Champions League
Date: 16 April 2018
Kick-off: 17:45 CET
What a game… One point is separating Al Rayyan and Al Ain, the hosts have to win, and they are playing in front of their own fans, a “final” for them, having spent more than a whole week getting ready for this massive game. They last played on Sunday, April 8, a 4-1 triumph at home over Al Ahli on the last day of the championship campaign in Qatar. They finished third, a position good enough to give them an AFC CL ticket for next season. It’s still unclear if they will go directly to the group stage, or need to go through qualifiers first. Depends on how the Emir Cup goes. They are in the quarterfinals. Two weeks ago they lost 2-0 at Esteghlal, a result that left them with their back against the wall.
A draw will be enough for Al Ain to finish in the top 2, and be in the last 16 of the competition next month. Two weeks ago they beat Al Hilal 2-1 at home, with their victory combined with over 2.5 goals (2.50) being my main tip back then. They went 1-0 down very early, but by halftime they were leading 2-1, thanks to not one, but two penalties awarded to them. Al Ain have scored six goals in the group, and it’s… utterly ridiculous that four of those have come from the penalty spot (they missed one as well). This may look like a… conspiracy theory to some, but to me it feels like “someone” really-really wants to see Al Ain progress in the competition. The penalties against Al Hilal were… “soft”, and the two against Esteghlal were a hideous disgrace, both of those. Al Ain are leading in the UAE’s championship, four points ahead of second-placed Al Wahda, with two games left.
Previous five matches:
Al Rayyan vs Al Ahli 4-1
Esteghlal vs Al Rayyan 2-0
Al Rayyan vs Umm Salal 2-2
Al Rayyan vs Al Hilal 2-1
Al Rayyan vs Al Arabi 1-3
Al Ain vs Al Fujairah 4-2
Al Ain vs Dibba Al Fujairah 4-0
Al Ain vs Al Hilal 2-1
Al Jazira vs Al Ain 2-3
Esteghlal vs Al Ain 1-1
Al Rayyan’s next game is against Al Sadd, next weekend (Qatar Crown Prince Cup). Al Ain will be visiting Al Nasr (UAE championship).
Al Rayyan vs Al Ain: Head to head Stats
Al Rayyan have hosted Al Ain once before, in 2013. They beat them 2-1.
Al Rayyan vs Al Ain: Prediction
Al Rayyan are considered slight favourites to win the game, but I’m betting on Al Ain to avoid defeat and qualify for the last 16. Honestly, I feel that if their performance alone is not good enough, the referee will… play a role in “saving” them. They have “enjoyed” absolutely “fantastic”(…) refereeing in their group matches thus far, and I can’t imagine anything different in the most important game of all.
Al Rayyan vs Al Ain: Betting Tips
Al Ain’s double chance is at 1.30 betting odds, very low, but very-very probable, from my point of view. “Over 2,5 goals” is at 1.72, and to me it makes sense, because Al Rayyan are obliged to score, to win, to take risks, whatever that means about the gaps they will unavoidably leave at the back.
More AFC Champions League betting tips and match previews:
- Persepolis vs Al Sadd
- Al Wasl vs Nasaf Qarshi
- Al Hilal vs Esteghlal
- Sydney FC vs Shanghai Shenhua
- Kashima Antlers vs Suwon Bluewings
- Jeju United vs Buriram United
- Guangzhou Evergrande vs Cerezo Osaka
- Al Duhail vs Al Wahda
- Lokomotiv Tashkent vs Zob Ahan
- Al Jazira vs Al Ahli
- Tractor Sazi vs Al Gharafa
- Kawasaki Frontale vs Ulsan Hyundai
- Melbourne Victory vs Shanghai SIPG
- Jeonbuk Motors vs Kitchee
- Tianjin Quanjian vs Kashiwa Reysol