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Al Batin v Al Ittihad

Al Ittihad thrash Al Batin to set up historic King’s Cup Final

05:45 SAST 2018/04/02
Al Faisaly - Saudi Arabia - SPL
Al Faisaly shocked Al Ahli in the second bout to prevent a Jeddah Derby Final

Al Ittihad managed to overcome Al Batin in the semi-final of the Saudi King’s Cup despite their poor season domestically, with a 6-2 thrashing helping them into the final. They will face Al Faisaly, who narrowly beat Al Ittihad’s rivals and Saudi Pro League title challengers Al Ahli to make it to their first ever final.

Al Ittihad and Al Batin’s game kicked off with a bang, with Al Batin’s Guillherme Schettine striking the ball into the corner after taking advantage of a deflection in the 2nd minute of the game from a free kick. Just 3 minutes later, Al Ittihad replied when Carlos Villanueva half-volleyed the ball into the top corner from outside of the box.

With half time ending at 1-1, both teams attempted to look for the winner and it looked like Al Batin were going to run away with the final qualification spot when, in the 62nd minute, Jhonattan took advantage of an Al Ittihad defensive mistake just outside the final third and dribbled all the way to the box to score. Once again, however, Al Ittihad replied within minutes, with Abdulrahman Al Ghamdi scoring a cute chip over the Al Batin goalkeeper Nasser Al Muhaini in the 68th minute.

Al Ghamdi added his personal second and the third of the match just 3 minutes later with a long shot that curved past the hapless Al Muhaini. In the 76th minute, Al Muhaini was caught out of focus once again when Akaichi scored a bouncing header into his net from a corner. Al Ittihad’s fifth goal came from a penalty in the 87th minute scored by Carlos Villanueva. In injury time, Abdulaziz Al Aryani scored the sixth goal for Al Ittihad.

In Al Faisaly and Al Ahli’s match, it was fairly quiet compared to the game in Hafr Al Batin. In the 75th minute, Al Faisaly’s counter attack ended with the ball in the net. It was actually cleared out of the net by Saeed Al Muwallad, but VAR declared it a goal for Al Faisaly who became known as the “first team to win a match by VAR”.

The date, time and place of the final is yet to be determined.