Doha: Qatar SC emerged as surprise Amir Cup finalists but the mission is not yet accomplished for Youssef Al Noubi’s men as they are now bracing for a tough challenge against hot favourites Al Sadd with the coveted title in sights.

They stunned their higher-ranked opponents on their way to the final, beating Al Gharafa in the semi-final on penalties on Sunday after eliminating Al Rayyan in the quarter-final, also in the shootout.

The Al Noubi’s side made a remarkable turnaround after finishing eighth in the Expo Stars League (ESL) as they are now just a victory away from seizing the prestigious trophy for the first time since 1975-76 season when they were known as Al Esteqlal.

However, they face an uphill task in Wesam Rizk’s Al Sadd, who were recently crowned the ESL champions and have been phenomenal this season.

But Qatar SC player Ali Malallah said the team is confident after overcoming tough obstacles on their way to the final to be played at the Education City on Friday.

“We proved our mettle and we deserved to be in the final,” the defender said after Qatar SC edged Al Gharafa 4-3 on penalties following a 2-2 draw to reach their first final since the 2003-04 season.

“Our spirits are high after reaching the final of this prestigious tournament after 20 years. Now we will give our best to win the title and will play the final with a high fighting spirit.”

Qatar SC forward Eisa Ahmad Palangi said the performance in the last two matches has boosted team’s morale.

“I think we have equal chances [of winning] in the final against Al Sadd. We have been outstanding in the tournament and we will play the final with full confidence,” he said.

Al Sadd entered the final after a 1-0 win over arch-rivals Al Duhail in the first semi-final on Saturday, and they immediately shifted their focus on sealing the title for a record-extending 19th time.

“We are just a win away from lifting the prestigious Amir Cup trophy and all our focus is on that,” Rizk had said after the win over Al Duhail as he hoped to secure a double in the season.

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