Al-Sadd won the 2020 Amir Cup after a 2-1 win over Al-Arabi in the final which was played on Friday at Al-Rayyan Stadium.
Baghdad Bounedjah opened the scoring for Al-Sadd in the 3rd minute, before Al-Arabi equalised through Aron Gunnarsson in the 24th minute. Bounedjah then returned in the 44th minute to score his second goal, which proved to be the winner.
This is Al-Sadd’s 17th triumph in the competition, and also the 73rd overall title in the club’s history.
Al-Sadd began strongly from the first whistle, and got their breakthrough goal in the 3rd minute, when Santi Cazorla sent a powerful shot at goal which went in after a deflection off Baghdad Bounedjah’s foot.
In the 24th minute, Al-Arabi equalised through Aron Gunnarsson. The Al-Sadd defence failed to properly clear the ball after a corner, and it fell to the Icelandic midfielder Gunnarsson, who tapped in from close range.
Following the equaliser, Al-Sadd pushed forward with more energy, and Bounedjah almost scored in the 35th minute, but his header was kept out by Al-Arabi keeper Mahmoud Abunada.
A minute before the end of first half normal time, Bounedjah got his second of the game, and it was in a similar fashion to his first. After a great series of passes around the box, the ball fell to Guilherme whose shot was deflected in by Bounedjah, leaving the goalkeeper with no chance of saving it.
The first half thus ended with a 2-1 lead for Al-Sadd.
At the beginning of the second half, Xavi Hernandez sent on Nam Tae-hee as his first substitute, replacing Mohammed Waad. Al-Sadd then went on to dominate play in midfield, looking for ways to draw the Al-Arabi players out of the backline.
Nam then had a great opportunity to score in the 55th minute, but his shot went out off the crossbar, after a fingertip save from Abunada.
As the game went on, few other chances materialised at either end, and Xavi then tried to maintain Al-Sadd’s grip on the game with two more substitutions in the 72nd minute, replacing Hassan Al-Haydos and Abdelkarim Hassan with Rodrigo Tabata and Musaab Khidir.
In the final few minutes of the game, Al-Arabi increased the pressure in search of another equaliser, but it never came, as Al-Sadd held on to their 2-1 lead to be crowned as champions.
Al-Sadd x Al-Arabi (2020 Amir Cup Final)
Al Rayyan Stadium
Al-Sadd: Meshaal Barsham, Pedro Miguel, Khoukhi Boualem, Jung Woo-young, Abdelkarim Hassan (Musaab Khidir), Guilherme, Mohammed Waad (Nam Tae-hee), Santi Cazorla, Akram Afif (Ahmed Suhail), Hassan Al-Haydos (Rodrigo Tabata), Baghdad Bounedjah (Ali Asad)
Al-Arabi: Mahmoud Abunada, Abdullah Maarafi, Jassim Jaber (Abdulaziz Al-Ansari), Ayoub Azzi, Marc Muniesa, Fahad Shanin, Aron Gunnarsson, Ahmed Fathi, Mehdi Torabi (Mohammed Salah), Mehrdad Mohammadi, Sebastian Soria
Al-Sadd won 2-1
Baghdad Bounedjah 3′, 44′
Aron Gunnarsson 23′
Abdelkarim Hassan 33′
Khoukhi Boualem 50′
Ayoub Azzi 69′
Akram Afif 90′
Fahad Shanin 90+2′
Saoud Al-Athba (main referee)
Zahi Al-Shammari (assistant 1)
Majed Al-Shammari (assistant 2)
Abdulhadi Al-Ruwaili (fourth official)
Salman Falahi (video assistant referee)
Taleb Al Marri (assistant video assistant referee)