Saudi Pro League Preview: Al Hilal vs. Al Shabab Prediction, Odds, and Picks (Sep 29)
- Neymar still hasn’t scored a goal as an Al Hilal player.
- Al Hilal is still flying high in the Saudi Pro League despite being in relatively poor form.
- Al Shabab has a much better roster than what its SPL odds might suggest.
The Neymar hype train is still on, but the Brazilian superstar still hasn’t done much since joining Al Hilal for a $300 million salary. He did make an assist on his debut, but in the next three games, he didn’t do anything.
The result is that his team’s offensive yield has diminished, which could bring all sorts of problems their way in the 2023 Saudi Pro League. In fact, if Neymar & Co. don’t up their attacking performances ASAP, we could see them drop points against Al Shabab on Friday, September 29.
How to Watch
- When: Friday, September 29, 2023, at 2:00 p.m ET
- Where: Prince Faisal bin Fahd Stadium, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
- How to Watch: Fubo
Al Hilal is second on the table in the 2023 Saudi Pro League, with just one point fewer than the table leader, Al Ittihad. This team is also through to the round of 16 of the Saudi King Cup and is playing in the group stage of the AFC Champions League. However, none of that is thanks to Neymar.
In fact, Al Hilal’s players were much more impressive on the field before he arrived. We’re not saying this without proof. Before Neymar made his first start for Al Hilal, the “Blue Waves” were on a 4-win streak. When the highest-paid player in the Saudi Pro League made his first start, Al Hilal played 1-1 with Navbahor at home in the AFC Champions League.
Then, they drew 1-1 with Damac in the Saudi Pro League, a team that’s one of the main relegation candidates. Finally, in their most recent game, they defeated Al Jabalain from the second tier of the Saudi soccer league system. They won, but it was only by one goal (scored by Ruben Neves).
Now, they’re facing a much tougher challenge when Al Shabab is coming to town. This team won its last three games and is hoping to stage an upset on Friday. With players like Yannick Carrasco, Ever Banega, and Romain Saiss, this team seems like a tough nut to crack.
Al Hilal vs. Al Shabab Prediction
All eyes are on Neymar, who really needs to up his game. Everyone knows he’s got the talent to do it, so it’s just a matter of time before he starts scoring. The Al Hilal vs. Al Shabab SPL game seems like an ideal opportunity for that. Sure, we might see the visitors score a goal or two, but if Neymar shines on Friday, his team will blow Al Shabab out.