Iranian teams emerge victorious in ACL Matchday 3

April 9, 2019

TEHRAN – Iran’s Esteghlal and Zob Ahan defeated their rivals in Matchday Three of the 2019 AFC Champions League on Monday.

Zob Ahan beat the UAE’s Al Wasl 3-1 at the Zabeel Stadium in Dubai.

Christian Osaguona scored once and created two goals as Zob Ahan stormed to a 3-1 victory against Al Wasl in Group A.

Coming off the back of their heaviest-ever AFC Champions League defeat, Al Wasl were looking to recover from their 5-0 humbling at the hands of Al Zawraa. Meanwhile, Zob Ahan looked to extend their unbeaten record this campaign to three games.

Caio Canedo, captaining the side in the absence of Fabio de Lima, broke the deadlock in the 14th minute, the-afc.com reported.

Two minutes later, Osaguona equalized the match with a diving header.

Amir Arsalan Motahari made it 2-1 in the 35th minute.

In the dying moments of the match, Hamid Bouhamdan drilled in a powerful strike from outside the box into the bottom corner to seal the victory for Zob Ahan.

Zob Ahan, who moved to seven points, welcome Al Wasl to Isfahan for the reverse fixture on April 23. A repeat of Monday’s win would put the Iranians within touching distance of sealing a place in the Round of 16.

Esteghlal also beat Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia 2-1 at Hamad bin Khalifa Stadium I Doha, Qatar.

Ali Karimi’s header in the fifth minute gave Esteghlal an early lead.

Esteghlal defender Pejman Montazeri found the back of the net with a flying header at the back post in the 30th minute.

Bafetimbi Gomis took advantage of a defensive mix-up to pull one back for Al Hilal in the 71st minute.

Esteghlal defender Milad Zakipour failed to clear Hassan Kadesh’s cross and the ball fell to the former Olympique Lyon forward who buried it home from close range to half the deficit.

Al Hilal remain top of Group C with six points ahead of April 23’s reverse fixture in Abu Dhabi, while the three points help Esteghlal climb up to third place in the group, behind second-placed Al Duhail on the head-to-head.