DOHA: The 2016 Workers Cup drew to a spectacular close yesterday evening at a near-capacity Al Ahli Sports Club Stadium, as Taleb Group claimed the fourth annual tournament with a 3-1 penalty shoot-out win over Gulf Contracting.
The game finished goalless at the end of regulation time, and it was left to the drama of a shoot-out to decide the victor.
After wild scenes of celebrations among players and fans, Taleb Group received the trophy from Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary-General, Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC); and Hani Ballan, CEO, Qatar Stars League (QSL).
In the presence of ambassadors, heads of missions of Bangladesh, Germany, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, the UK and the US, the deputy head of mission of the French Embassy, other dignitaries, officials from the football community and renowned five-time World Cup coach Bora Milutinovic, both teams had chance to win the match in normal time.
The closely-fought final ended in a stalemate but was entertaining, played in front of an exuberant crowd, with each side represented handsomely.
In the ensuing penalties, it was Taleb Group that held their nerve.
After the match, Al Thawadi said:
“The final was an amazing event. The passion of the players, fans and the coaches was incredible. This tournament is an example of how football brings people together. ”
“It was a privilege to see these players enjoy themselves and compete so fiercely and I hope the experience will live with the winners and runners-up for a long time. There is no question this has been the most successful Workers Cup to date and we look forward to making it bigger and better next year.”