Al-Sadd coach Xavi Hernandez stressed on the difficulty of the upcoming QNB Stars League Round 15 clash with Al-Khor, and the need to be focused.
Speaking at the pre-match press conference, Xavi said: “Everybody remembers that we drew against Al Khor. They are one of the two teams that we lost points against. They’re in a good moment after defeating Al Ahli.”
He added: “It will be a difficult game. We are in a good moment but we cannot lose points. We have to maintain the distance from the rest of the clubs. After a big win over Duhail, we need to concentrate, be focused and keep going.”
“Of course, we are favourites but everybody remembers that we drew 0-0 in the first phase.”
“It will be tough because they are aggressive and well-organised. They have a good defence and also have new foreigner players.”
“We need to get three points and we cannot slip.”
Al-Sadd have been in great form recently, building up a big lead at the top of the table but Xavi reiterated there was still a long way to go.
“Of course, we accept that we are favourites to win this competition but we have not won anything yet,” said the coach.
“We have 8 difficult games remaining. Everybody knows that all the teams have improved a lot in the QSL, especially in the last two seasons.”
“So we have to keep going, game by game, getting three points. Now our focus is on Al Khor and we must forget everything else.”
Of course, we are clear favourites with a lead of 11 points over Al Duhail. But we didn’t win anything yet.”
Xavi added: “I repeat and I insist to the players that we haven’t won anything yet. To take the trophy, we have to focus and be at our 100% on the pitch.”
Asked about his message to the players, he said: “The message is really clear: we cannot relax. This is football and we have a lot of experience and know that if we relax, everybody can defeat Al Sadd.”
“But if we do not relax, Al Sadd can win against all the opponents, like we are showing in the league table.”
“The message is very clear: we cannot slip and we cannot relax. We have to keep going, playing well with a good feeling in the team.”
He concluded by saying: “Everybody is happy and everybody is important in the team. We are doing rotation and we are in the best moment since I came here. We have to take advantage of this lead of 11 points.”