Riyadh: Al-Ahli’s troubled striker Omar Al-Somah has been fined by the Saudi FA and dropped by his coach Sergei Rebrov for his reaction to being substituted in last week’s crucial title decider against Al-Hilal.
The Saudi Arabian Football Association Federation’s disciplinary and ethics committee decided to fine the player 20,000 Saudi riyals ($5,300) for a seemingly innocuous misdemeanour of failing to attend a post-match interview after last week’s Saudi Pro League 0-0 draw with Al-Hilal.
The Saudi FA committee issued a statement on Thursday confirming the fine saying Al-Somah had refused to hold a talk with MBC Pro, which contravened the statutes of the Saudi Professional League.
It puts an end to a turbulent season for the Syrian striker who has been dropped for today’s final game of the season with Ohod, due to his ongoing feud with Al-Ahli’s coach Sergei Rebrov and not been named in Al-Ahli’s AFC Champions League squad for next Tuesday’s trip to UAE’s Al-Jazira.
The working relationship between Al-Somah and Rebrov has been tense all season and it completely broke down in the couch clash against Al-Hilal after the Syrian striker expressed his anger at being replaced with 20 minutes left, with team needing the three points to stay on course to challenge for the league title.
Al-Somah, who has scored 11 goals in 14 matches in the Saudi Professional League, had previously been suffering from an ankle injury which saw him on the sidelines for three months of the season and after returning last month, Al-Ahli’s coach has replaced the Syrian striker for his Mohanad Asiri in each of the past three league matches, with his substitution in such a key title decider adding to the fractious relationship with the Ukrainian coach.
However, whilst Al-Somah, the club’s top scorer over the past three seasons, is expected to remain at the club, press reports in Saudi Arabia have alleged that Al-Ahli are looking to dismiss their Ukrainian coach after the end of their AFC Champions League campaign, with the club’s management already looking at alternative replacements for next season.