The curtain has come down on the sixth match-week of ADNOC Pro League that comprised lots of excitement and surprises, with the competition set to undergo a three-week halt due to the international break.
None of the top four, barring Al Jazira, managed to truly reinforce their positions in week 6 action ahead of the lengthy break.
Playing at home, Al Ain lapsed at the very last minute to grant visiting archrivals Al Wahda a last-gasp equalizer and drop vital points in the final match of the round late on Wednesday.
Al Ain had looked the more solid of the two after snatching the lead in the 65th minute through Soufian Rahimi who made the best of the pass from top scorer, Kodjo Laba.
But Al Wahda hung in resolutely till the very last minute and got a well-deserved leveler through Omar Khrbin in the 100th minute to deny the home team full points.
Despite the result, Al Ain continued their narrow lead of the standings with 14 points, while Al Wahda slipped one spot behind, into eighth with eight points.
Al Jazira made up for previous week’s loss to Sharjah with a gutsy 1-0 win at home over Al Orooba climbing up to the second spot with 13 points, while Sharjah remained in third place on 12 points despite shockingly falling 1-0 to their neighbors Ajman.
Former champions Shabab Al Ahli also faltered during this round as they lost away from home to Al Wasl, thanks to a 72nd minute goal from Michel Araujo , and missed an opportunity to catch up with the front runners.
Mehdi Ali’s boys now lie in fourth with 11 points, only to be joined by Ajman who racked up the same tally.
Neighbors Al Nasr and Al Wasl are currently occupying the next two slots with ten and nine points respectively, as Al Nasr fought their way to an entertaining last-gasp 2-2 draw against visiting Bani Yas on Wednesday.
Khorfakkan took full advantage of playing at home turning their 1-0 loss into a 2-1 victory over bottom-of-the-table Emirates with a magnificent strike in the 89th minute.
Emirates are yet to earn their first point so far this season.
At the individual level, Al Ain’s Kodjo Laba is still on top of the goal scorers’ list having netted nine goals, followed by both Sharjah’s Ben Malango and Al Nasr’s Sebastian Tagliabue, who have scored on 5 occasions so far this season.
The UAE ADNOC Pro League will now take a break to allow the national team to continue preparation for their third round of 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers as they are set for two clashes against Iran (October 7) and Iraq (October 12).
The league will next resume with the seventh round scheduled for October 21-23.
In the meantime, clubs won't enjoy a recess, since they will be kept busy with preliminary round games of the UAE Pro League Cup kicking off on October 8, with the fixture between Khorfakkan and Al Wahda.