On the evening of Monday, May 23, all eyes will turn to the “Radiant Jewel” stadium in Jeddah, where the expected summit will take place between the leaders and hosts Al-Ittihad and its followers Al-Hilal in the 27th stage of the Saudi Football League.
Al-Ittihad leads the competition standings with 61 points, 6 points ahead of Al-Hilal, the second-ranked player with 55 points, 3 stages before the end of the competition.
Al-Ittihad presented an exceptional season, during which it regained much of its lost glow and prestige in recent years, as frustration dominated and led for long periods, and was the most victorious with 19 wins, 4 draws and 3 defeats.
As for Al Hilal, the defending champion in the last two seasons and the AFC Champions League champion last season, it experienced some fluctuation in results, and had to change its French coach, Leonardo Jardim, and restore Argentine coach Ramon Diaz to his position, and during this season he managed to achieve 16 victories, compared to 7 draws and 3 defeats.
Al-Ittihad will enter the confrontation at its home and in front of its fans, with its eyes on achieving a victory that will officially decide the Saudi League title for the ninth time in its history and the first since the 2008/2009 season. As for Al Hilal, it is looking for victory to reduce the difference to only 3 points and wait for another bump for Al Ittihad in the remaining three stages in order to maintain the title and enhance its record of the 18th title.
Al-Hilal outperforms Al-Ittihad in the history of confrontations in the Saudi League
Al-Hilal and Al-Ittihad met in 27 matches for the Saudi League, and during these meetings, Al-Hilal had the supreme word, winning 11 matches and losing 7 matches, and the two teams’ confrontations were settled in 8 matches.
Since the opening of King Abdullah City Stadium in Jeddah, Al-Jawhara, the two teams have met in 7 confrontations, which Al Hilal won with 3 victories compared to Al-Ittihad’s only victory in the 2015/2016 season, and one match ended in a draw.
The expected formation of Al-Ittihad and Al-Hilal in the Clasico of the Saudi League
Al-Ittihad has restored its Egyptian international defender Ahmed Hegazy, after he recovered from the injury of his absence for more than 4 months, specifically since the match against Al-Batin for the fifteenth stage of the league.
by recovering Hegazy; It is expected that the Romanian coach of Al-Ittihad, Cosmin Contra, will form the strongest “Tigers” formation, and accordingly, Al-Ittihad may enter the decisive confrontation with Al-Hilal with the following formation:
Goalkeeper: Marcelo Grohe.
line of defense: Hamdan Al-Shamrani, Ahmed Hegazy, Ziyad Al-Sahafi, Muhannad Al-Shanqiti.
Midline: Felipe, Bruno Henrique, Abdelaziz Al-Bishi, Romarinho, Coronado.
offensive line: Abdul Razzaq, thank God.
As for Al Hilal, it suffers from some injuries, as South Korean defender Hyun Su Jang and midfielder Salman Al-Faraj suffer from injuries, and midfielder Nasser Al-Dosari will be absent due to the death of one of his relatives.
According to Saudi media, coach Diaz summoned Jang and Al-Faraj to the match, which means that their participation is still pending, and in their absence; The Argentine coach, Mohamed Hejfli, will replace Diaz and Musab Al-Juwair will replace Al-Faraj.
It is expected that the basic formation of Al Hilal in the upcoming summit against Al Ittihad at the “Al Jawhara” stadium in Jeddah will be as follows:
Goalkeeper: Abdullah Al-Mayouf.
line of defense: Yasser Al-Shahrani, Ali Al-Bilahi, Hyun Soo Jang (Mohammed Jahafli), Muhammad Al-Buraik.
Midline: Abdullah Atif, Salman Al-Faraj (Musab Al-Juwair), Salem Al-Dosari, Pereira, Musa Mariga.
Offensive line: Odeon Ighalo.
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