Saturday, April 20, 2019

AFC Champions League Review: Xavi double not enough for Al Sadd

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 9 Apr 2019

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Two goals from Xavi were not enough for Al Sadd as they were held to a 2-2 draw by Pakhtakor Tashkent in the AFC Champions League on Tuesday.

The former Barcelona star twice put the Qatar Stars League champions ahead in Uzbekistan, but Khojiakbar Alijonov and Dragan Ceran ensured a point for the home side.

The result keeps Pakhtakor top of Group D, a point above Al Sadd after three matches, while Persepolis moved into third with a 2-0 defeat of Al-Ahli.

Holders Kashima Antlers secured a 3-2 win away to Gyeongnam thanks to a dramatic final 15 minutes in Changwon.

The Japanese side were 2-0 down heading into the final quarter of an hour thanks to an own goal from Tomoya Inukai and a strike from Jordon Mutch.

An own goal from Woo Ju-sung got Antlers back in the game, and although Inukai’s miserable outing was compounded by a second yellow card, Takeshi Kanamori and Serginho struck a goal apiece in injury time to snatch victory.

They now lead Group E, two points ahead of Shandong Luneng, who beat Johor Darul Ta’zim 2-1 through goals from Marouane Fellaini and Graziano Pelle.

Jeonbuk Motors moved top of Group G by beating Urawa Red Diamonds 1-0, while Beijing Sinobo Guoan are level on points with the J1 League side thanks to a 3-1 win at Buriram United courtesy of Cedric Bakambu’s hat-trick.

In Group B, Al Wahda moved top after Leonardo’s injury-time penalty sealed a 2-1 win at Al Rayyan, while Al-Ittihad are also on six points after Fahad Al Muwallad also scored from the spot in stoppage time to see off Lokomotiv Tashkent 3-2.

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