Iran’s Persepolis fall short against Al Ahli Saudi

April 22, 2019

TEHRAN – Omar Al Somah scored a brace as Saudi Arabia’s Al Ahli defeated Persepolis of Iran 2-1 in Group D of the AFC Champions League on Monday.

The two teams came into the match occupying the last two places in the group, with Persepolis sitting third with four points after their 2-0 win against Al Ahli on Matchday Three left the Saudis bottom of the group with three points.

It took half an hour for the first goal of the game to arrive, and it was Al Somah who registered it for the home team.

Ghareeb skipped past two defenders and looked to round Persepolis goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand who brought him down inside the box.

The Chinese referee awarded a penalty which Al Somah emphatically drove home for his third goal of the campaign.

Persepolis controlled the dominance in the second half and created several chances but Ali Alipour, Siamak Nemati and Soroush Rafiei wasted their chances.

Eight minutes before the end of the 90 minutes, Beiranvand was left helpless to rescue after Al Soma curled a free-kick from the edge of the box into the top corner to add the second goal for Al Ahli and for himself on the night.

As he did in the first match, defender Shojae Khalilzadeh showed his eye for goal, heading home Rafiei’s cross in added time. His goal this time was merely a consolation for Persepolis as the final whistle confirmed a 2-1 win for the Saudis.

Competition for qualification spots remains heated in Group D, with Al Sadd of Qatar, who defeated Uzbekistan’s Pakhtakor 2-1, climbed to the top with seven points. Al Ahli sit second with six points. Pakhtakor are third collecting five points and Persepolis sit bottom of the table with four points.

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