Monday, July 22, 2024
HomesportRonaldo double keeps Al-Nassr perfect in Asian Champions League

Ronaldo double keeps Al-Nassr perfect in Asian Champions League

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a spectacular double as Al-Nassr stayed perfect in the Asian Champions League on Tuesday, the Saudi Pro League outfit getting a 4-3 win in Riyadh over Al Duhail from Qatar to move on to nine points from three games in Group E.

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid forward set up Anderson Talisca to score his side’s opener in the 25th minute and Sadio Mane netted the second, with Ronaldo scoring from distance in the 61st minute to give Al-Nassr a three-goal lead.

Ismaeel Mohammad and Almoez Ali pulled Al Duhail back into contention before Ronaldo’s 81st-minute volley restored their two-goal cushion, only for Michael Olunga to hit Al Duhail’s third with five minutes remaining to ensure a tense finish.

The win moves Al-Nassr three points clear of Iran’s Persepolis, who saw Alireza Beiranvand make a seventh-minute penalty save from Senin Sebai before winning 2-0 in Tehran against FC Istiklol of Tajikistan.

Saeid Sadeghi scored twice to earn the home side their second win in three games and go five points clear of Al Duhail and Istiklol, who have a solitary point each.

Al-Ain moved a step closer to the knockout rounds as Alfred Schreuder’s side thrashed Saudi side Al-Fayha 4-1 to maintain their perfect record in Group A.

Paraguayan Kaku hit a brace, having seen Kouame Kouaido open the scoring, with Soufiane Rahimi confirming the win in the final minute after Nawaf Al Harthi had scored a consolation for the visitors.

Kouaido gave the side from the United Arab Emirates the lead in the 36th minute with a well-judged header and Kaku doubled the advantage in first-half injury time as Al-Ain showed their class.

Kaku put his side further in front with a simple finish after Brazilian winger Erik stormed down the left and, while Al Harthi scored for Al-Fayha six minutes from time, Rahimi capped a sparkling performance with his side’s late fourth.

The win takes Al-Ain to nine points from three games, six points clear of Al-Fayha, Pakhtakor of Uzbekistan and Ahal.

Pakhtakor picked up their first win of the campaign with a 3-0 victory over the side from Turkmenistan in Tashkent with Azizbek Turgunboyev scoring twice after Hojimat Erkinov had put the Uzbeks ahead.

Only the winners of each of the 10 groups in the competition will advance to the last 16, where they will be joined by the three best runners-up from the eastern and western halves of the draw.

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