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Basheer Saeed sets sights on AFC Champions League

Dubai: UAE and Al Ahli defender Basheer Saeed has set his sights on winning the AFC Champions League within the next two years.

Al Ahli are chasing a record four trophies this year, having already won the season-opening Super Cup with a win over defending league champions Al Ain.

With a 12-point lead at the top of the standings and just four rounds to be played, the Red Knights are assured of their sixth league crown, and their second Arabian Gulf League title of the professional era.

On April 19, they face Al Jazira in the final of the Arabian Gulf Cup in Al Ain, and exactly a month later they will take on Al Ain in the season-ending President’s Cup.

“We are in a position to create some football history in the UAE. But our sights are already on the next couple of seasons and winning the league can be a huge success as we will be able to concentrate on winning the AFC Champions League in the future,” Saeed told Gulf News.

“It’s the final few weeks of the season and we need to maintain the same level of commitment and focus. We have bonded well as a team and now we need to translate this superiority by fulfilling all the goals we had put before ourselves at the beginning of the season,” he added.

After Italy’s World Cup captain Fabio Cannavaro having announced his retirement following two years with Al Ahli, the Red Knights signed Saeed from Al Wahda on a two-year contract. That move yielded results, with Al Ahli dominating this season and Saeed himself scoring twice in the 21 appearances he has made in the league so far.

“Going for all four trophies is a huge responsibility and the idea is to take it one at a time. First we need to get the league, and then the Arabian Gulf Cup and finally the President’s Cup. Only after that we can think about the AFC Champions League,” Saeed said.

“We have worked hard to be where we are and hopefully we will keep the momentum going,” he added.