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The 2023-2024 season Expo Stars League witnessed challenges and difficulties, and competition between the teams lasted till the final round.

It is certain that the teams will seek to build on their positives and address areas for improvement in order to be better in the new season (2024-2025).

In successive episodes, we review each team’s performance in the 2023-2024 Expo Stars League.


Muaither finished the 2023-2024 Expo Stars League in 12th and last place with 14 points, winning three matches, drawing five and losing 14, making it the team with the most number of defeats along with Al Markhiya. They scored 34 goals and conceded 57, second among teams that conceded the most goals.

Muaither were straightaway relegated to the Second Division. They played in the 2023-2024 season top flight by virtue of being the 2022-2023 season Second Division champions.

Muaither faced difficulties in many matches despite the distinguished performance they put up in some games. They seemed to have been hit by the lack of experience in the big league and that affected their level and overall performance.

Murcia and Da Silva

During the season, Muaither were guided by two coaches –Spaniard Jose Murcia and Uruguayan Jorge da Silva.

Murcia, who guided them to the Second Division triumph in the 2022-2023 season, started with Muaither, but when there was a decline in results, he was relieved of his duties in November, 2023, after Week 8 when they lost to Umm Salal.

The club management assigned the task to Uruguayan coach Jorge da Silva, who guided them to a 0-0 draw with Al Rayyan in his first match in charge.

Strong deals to strengthen ranks

Muaither signed a number of foreign and local professional players at the beginning of the season as part of their plan to strengthen the ranks. The most prominent of them were Congolese striker Guy Mbenza from Saudi side Al Tai, Romanian forward Denis Alibec, Uruguayan Ramon Arias, Moroccan Ayman El Hassouni and Malian Mamadou Traore in addition to Abdulrahman Rashid from Al Sadd, goalkeeper Ivanildo Rodriguez from Al Ahli and Abdulghani Munir.

Loss in first two rounds

Muaither had a faltering start in the league with defeat in the first two rounds, against Al Wakrah (0-3) and Al Duhail (1-4).

First victory

The third round saw Muaither score their first victory in the league as they beat Al Markhiya 5-2 in a match in which the team presented a great level. Mbenza shone with four goals. They then drew 2-2 with Al Shamal in Week 4 before losing to Al Ahli in the next round.

Between ups and downs in level and overall performance, Muaither finished the first leg in 11th place with six points (from a victory, three draws and seven losses).

Yazan Al Arab, Tiago, Bustami and Claude Amin join

In the winter transfer window and during the Asian Cup break, Muaither strengthened their ranks by signing Jordanian international defender Yazan Al Arab from Iraq’s Al Shorta and Brazilian professional Tiago de Leonco from the UAE’s Khor Fakkan. Mbenza moved to Kuwait SC, while Moataz Bustami joined from Qatar SC and goalkeeper Claude Amin joined from Al Gharafa.

The team played four friendlies. They beat Mesaimeer 3-2, drew 2-2 with Armenian team FC Noah, lost 2-3 to Al Bidda and drew 1-1 with Al Rayyan.

League returns

The league returned with Week 14 action, where Muaither beat Al Markhiya. However, they had a spate of negative results and lost their last match to Al Arabi, thereby ending up in 12th place.

Tiago de Leonco is the top scorer

Brazilian striker Tiago de Leonco, who joined Muaither in the winter transfer window, was their top scorer in the Expo Stars League with seven goals. He was one of the players who exhibited a distinguished level for Muaither.

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Published on: 02/06/2024


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