TASHKENT, UZBEKISTAN, April 5, 2016 : Sabri Lamouchi hailed his club’s Uzbekistan international striker Sardour Rashidov ahead of El Jaish’s return meeting with Nasaf in Group D of the AFC Champions League on Tuesday as the Qatari club look to take another step closer to qualification for the Round of 16.
Rashidov (pictured) scored the only goal of the game three minutes from time when the teams met on Matchday Three before netting the winner for his national team in qualifying for the FIFA World Cup against Bahrain last Tuesday.
“Sardor Rashidov came to Karshi from playing for the national team,” said Lamouchi. “I hope he is ready and can play tomorrow.
“He played well in both matches for the Uzbekistan national team and I think Rashidov has the quality to play for a European club. He always tries to help our team.”
El Jaish will be without Brazilian Wagner Ribeiro, who has not travelled to Uzbekistan due to person issues, and victory for Lamouchi’s side will take the Qatar Stars League club into the knockout phase of the competition.
“We had a tough game against Nasaf in Doha and we were lucky in that match,” said Lamouchi. “We know how strong our opponents are. We will try to enjoy game and show good football.
“All of the players are ready for the game. Nasaf have their philosophy. Every team plays with their possibilities and they choose their style of play. We play together in defence and attack. We tried not to give Nasaf any space in the first match and it gave us the result we wanted. You should choose your tactics based on your players’ qualities.”
Nasaf are in a three-way tie on three points from their opening three games with Al Ain and Al Ahli and coach Ruzikul Berdiev knows his team need to pick up points if they are to have any hope of progressing to the knockout rounds.
“We will play against a strong team tomorrow,” he said. “Maybe we have played well in the AFC Champions League, but we don’t have enough points. We need a victory so that we still have a good chance to qualify for the next stage.
“El Jaish are a well organised team. They are very dangerous on the counter attack and we need to remember that during the match. The game will be very tough and difficult but we can’t drop points now. It is a very important match for us and we have to play disciplined football.
“Bakhrom Abdurakhimov joined the group yesterday and he says he is fit for tomorrow’s match. I will decide later who will begin the game as our striker.
“We need to play without pressure. I hope fans will be our 12th player and we will try to give best and to give our fans victory.”