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Saudi Pro League | Gameweek 15
Dec 1, 2023 at 6pm UK
King Fahd Sport City Stadium
Al-Nassr
Al-Hilal
3 - 0
Al-Nassr
Milinkovic-Savic (64'), Mitrovic (90', 90+2')
Mitrovic (69'), Koulibaly (79'), Malcom (90+5'), Jahfali (90+10')
Albulayhi (90+3')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Otavio (40'), Yahya (90+2')

Preview: Al-Hilal vs. Al-Nassr - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's Saudi Pro League clash between Al-Hilal and Al-Nassr, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

A battle of the heavyweights is set to unfold in the Saudi Pro League this week, when Al-Hilal take on rivals Al-Nassr at King Fahd International Stadium on Friday evening.

Fans are preparing for the first major Riyadh derby of the 2023-24 league season, and the stakes are as high as they could be, with the hosts currently leading the league standings while the visitors are right on their shoulders in second place.


Match preview

Al Hilal's Sergej Milinkovic-Savic pictured on September 29, 2023© Reuters

While the PIF-owned sides currently dominate the top four spots in the Pro League this season, these two sides have pulled away from the chasing pack, with Al Ahli seven points behind Al-Hilal in pole position.

The Blue Waves have been immense this season and come into this match boasting a record of 12 wins and just two draws in their 14 league matches this season, which sees them holding a four-point advantage over their opponents.

Jorge Jesus's side returned from the international break with a thumping 9-0 win over Al Hazm last weekend and followed that up with a fourth consecutive AFC Champions League win over Navbahor in midweek.

Salem Al Dawsari and Malcom found the net in the 2-0 win that night, and the latter has now scored four goals in two matches following his hat-trick against Hazem Al Samood over the weekend.

Al-Hilal have not conceded a single goal in their last five matches in all competitions and are unbeaten in their last 21, dating back to August when they lost to this opponent in the Arab Club Champions Cup final in extra time.

Al Nassr's Aymeric Laporte celebrates scoring their second goal with teammates on November 4, 2023© Reuters

Cristiano Ronaldo was the player responsible for scoring the two goals in that final and took Al-Nassr to their first-ever Arab Club Champions Cup title, despite his side playing a large chunk of the match with nine men.

The five-time Ballon d'Or winner also scored a brace in their 3-0 win over Al Akhdoud following the international break, and with that, he set yet another record, registering his 527th league goal, which is more than any player in history.

That result marked Al-Alami's fifth consecutive league win and 10th match unbeaten after losing their first two matches of the campaign to Al Ittifaq and Al Taawon back in the middle of September.

Luis Castro's side have also been formidable on the road of late, currently riding a nine-match winning streak in away games in the top flight while scoring two or more goals in each of those victories, although they have only kept two clean sheets in that time.

While Al-Nassr did manage to emerge victorious in that cup encounter earlier this year, they were beaten by this opponent at this venue last term and will know that another defeat here could prove to be very costly in the title race.

Al-Hilal Saudi Pro League form:


Al-Hilal form (all competitions):


Al-Nassr Saudi Pro League form:


Al-Nassr form (all competitions):



Team News

Al Hilal coach Jorge Jesus on September 15, 2023© Reuters

Al Hilal's record this season looks even more impressive when taking into consideration that they have played the entire campaign to date without the services of their Brazilian superstar Neymar, who will miss the season with a cruciate ligament tear.

Former Fulham striker Aleksander Mitrovic was given a slight rest in midweek against Navbahor but he should return to the starting 11 here, having scored in each of his last eight starts in all competitions.

For Al-Nassr, the undoubted major concern for this match will be over the fitness of Ronaldo, who was forced off the pitch in their AFC Champions League match due to a neck injury.

Aside from the skipper, David Ospina is the only other player flagged with an injury, which should see Nawaf Alaqidi continue between the sticks for the visitors.


Al-Hilal possible starting lineup:
Bounou; Koulibaly, Al Burayk, Al Bulayhi, Abdulhamid; Neves, Kanno, Michael; Al Qahtani, Mitrovic, Malcom

Al-Nassr possible starting lineup:
Alaqidi; Al-Boushal, Alawjami, Laporte, Telles; Brozovic, Fofana, Otavio, Talisca, Mane; Ronaldo


SM words green background

We say: Al-Hilal 2-1 Al-Nassr

Both these sides come into this match carrying excellent league form, but the visitors did show a few signs of weakness in midweek, especially after the withdrawal of the league's top scorer, Cristiano Ronaldo. The hosts, though, were solid in their AFC Champions League outing, and their unbeaten record this season cannot be ignored.

We are expecting a high-quality encounter here but are siding with Al Hilal to edge the contest by a single goal.



For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.


Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 2.5:data


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Game History

How you voted: Al-Hilal vs Al-Nassr

Al-Hilal
33.0%
Draw
10.0%
Al-Nassr
57.0%
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Al-Hilal's Ruben Neves pictured on August 19, 2023
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Today's games header
Tables header RHS
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Al-HilalAl-Hilal20182062105256
2Al-Nassr20161357243349
3Al-AhliAl-Ahli21134447232443
4Al-TaawounAl-Taawoun21115536241238
5Al Ittihad20104639261334
6Damac218763627931
7Al Fateh218673529630
8Al Ettifaq207762422228
9Al WahdaAl Wahda2082103235-326
10Al ShababAl Shabab206682025-524
11Al Okhdood2172121730-1323
12Al Khaleej2064102330-722
13Al Fayha205782232-1022
14Al RaedAl Raed2155112635-920
15Al Riyadh2155111840-2220
16Al Tai2153132244-2218
17Abha2043132353-3015
18Al Hazem2027112050-3013

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