Al Arabi coach Heimir Hallgrimsson spoke to the media ahead of their 2019-20 QNB Stars League Week 19 match against Al Rayyan.
“Al Gharafa game in the 18th round of QNB Stars League was the most important game for us in the league this season. The defeat was difficult and made our chances to qualify for the top four very difficult.
“We will try to take advantage of all our chances in the remaining four games and see what will happen at the end, but it is difficult to get above Al Gharafa in the table.
“The defeat had an effect after the match, as the players were frustrated because we wished to win against Al Gharafa. I had to explain to our players that they did their best and have to regain their confidence against Al Rayyan. I know that both teams always have many fans, but in the current situation they cannot attend the games, but I hope we will make our fans happy at the end of the game.
“The return of Hamdi Harbaoui and Abdullah Marafie to the squad is a good thing. They are experienced players and they will be good additions to the squad, but the players who played against Al Gharafa did their best,” said Hallgrimsson.
Al Arabi player Hamdi Harbaoui said, “Al Rayyan will play very seriously as they are close to winning the league. They will be under immense pressure in the remaining four games, so I believe they will do their best right from the start of the game.
“I think our team actually needs all our players, especially the key players. I say humbly that our team needed me in the last game against Al Gharafa. I am ready and totally fit for the game against Al Rayyan and I hope to rise up to the expectations of our fans and coach.
“After losing to Al Gharafa, I believe all people have a feeling that we did not deserve the defeat. We also think the chance of us getting into the top four is remote now. But the mission is still possible and we are committed towards making a strong comeback starting from the game against Al Rayyan.
“All players and the technical staff know how important the upcoming four matches are for us and we are preparing in the best possible way. We are serious about scoring victory against Al Rayyan, who are competing for the tittle with Al Duhail.
“As players, we are trying to do our best in the training sessions in order to be ready 100 per cent and play to our plan. We are all focused on this game and will start it with the highest intensity.”