2018 AFC Champions League Matchday One Review: West Zone

Al Wahda shockingly thrashed by Lokomotiv 5-0

The first day of the 2018 AFC Champions League Group Stage culminated today when Al Ahli confirmed their win over Tractor Sazi with a 1-0 scoreline.

A disappointing performance in hindsight by Al Ahli was rewarded with 3 points when Sergey Rebrov’s side took advantage via a Mohaned Asiri header in the 67th minute to score the only goal of the night.

UAE side and Arabian Gulf League’s second place Al Wahda – admittedly in the absence of Sebastian Tagliabue, Mourad Batna and Rim Chang Woo – were thrashed 5-0 by Uzbek side Lokomotiv Tashkent to begin their ACL campaign poorly.

Nivaldo Ferreira opened the scoring for Lokomotiv in the 25th minute, before a trio of goals between minutes 53 and 59 saw Al Wahda go 4-0 down by the hour mark. Within those goals was a goal of the season contender by Lokomotiv’s Ikromjon Alibaev.

Elsewhere in the tournament, Al Duhail beat Zobahan 3-1 with three goals in the last 15 minutes of the game to overturn their 1-0 deficit. Karim Boudiaf hit twice in the 74th and 76th minute, before Youssef Msakni scored the third.

Al Jazira and Al Gharafa played out an entertaining match that saw 5 goals, with the Pride of Abu Dhabi coming out winners in the end, 3-2. Romarinho opened the scoring for Al Jazira in the 10th minute via a wonder goal from the right flank, but Mahdi Taremi equalized just a minute later to make it 1-1.

Ali Mabkhout then added to Al Jazira’s score in the 27th minute, before fellow Emirati forward Ahmed Al Hashmi added the third in the 69th minute with a strong strike into the far corner from long range.

Wesley Sneijder then scored his debut ACL goal in the 71st minute, taking advantage of a rebound to score into the empty net, but his strike was merely a consolation for the Qatari side.

The action resumes tomorrow with the rest of the West Asian sides playing, in addition to the kick off of the East Asian groups.

Next article:
Papiss Cisse, Mbaye Diagne on target as Alanyaspor defeat Kasimpasa
Next article:
Away teams should fear Anfield - Liverpool's Joel Matip
Next article:
West Ham failed to take chances in Chelsea draw - Pellegrini
Next article:
Neymar eager to repay supporters' affection after giving shirt to crying boy
Next article:
Tuchel buoyed by PSG's positive response to Liverpool loss