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AFC Champions League

  • October 26, 2011
  • • 16:00
  • • Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium (Al-Sadd Stadium), ad-Dōha (Doha)
  • Referee: Ali Hamad Madhad Saif Al Badwawi
  • • Attendance: 10800
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Al Sadd win Aggregate 2 - 1

Al Sadd 0-1 Suwon Bluewings (Agg. 2-1): Defensive Qataris hang on despite early Oh Jang-Eun goal to reach ACL final

Al Sadd 0-1 Suwon Bluewings (Agg. 2-1): Defensive Qataris hang on despite early Oh Jang-Eun goal to reach ACL final

The Qatari club employed defensive tactics after their controversial 2-0 first-leg win in Korea but did enough to reach the decider as the Koreans struggled for clear-cut chances

Al Sadd's controversial run in the 2011 AFC Champions League has continued after they reached the final by claiming a 2-1 aggregate victory over Suwon Bluewings despite a 1-0 second leg defeat in Doha on Wednesday.

The Qatari outfit had won the first leg in Korea in controversial circumstances following Mamadou Niang's 'ungentlemanly' second goal which sparked an all-in melee between the sides.

And ultimately Niang's goal proved the difference, as Suwon failed to overturn the first leg deficit despite Oh Jang-Eun putting them ahead early in Qatar.

The Koreans started the game with plenty of intent with Oh Jang-Eun firing over from long-range as they sought to test the unconvincing Al Sadd goalkeeper Mohammed Saqr.

On nine minutes, Suwon were ahead when skipper Yeom Ki-Hun's corner was headed into Oh Jang-Eun's direction and he controlled the ball with his chest before volleying in a fine effort which hit the back of the net with the aid of a slight deflection.

The 2010 Korean FA Cup winners continued their offensive play with Yeom's cross screwed wide by Lee Sang-Ho on 10 minutes.

Under the extreme pressure, Al Sadd boss Jorge Fossati employed ever more defensive tactics, at times playing with a back six which the Bluewings found hard to break down.

And on 34 minutes, Al Sadd came close to scoring when Nadir Belhadj's corner was cleared into the impressive Khalfan Ibrahim's path and he unleashed a powerful long-range strike which Suwon keeper Jung Sung-Ryong did brilliantly to save onto the crossbar and away from goal.

Six minutes later, Khalfan showed skill on the left flank before Hassan Al Haidos shot wide from a cross as Al Sadd came into the contest on the counterattack.

Park Hyun-Beom went agonisingly close to getting on the end of a back post free-kick on 59 minutes, before Mato Neretljak headed wide moments later.

On 70 minutes, Khalfan broke on a counterattack where the Suwon defence backed off, allowing the Qatar international to unleash a powerful effort which forced Jung into a sharp save.

Suwon boss Yoon Sung-Hyo through on several attacking players late on, including Uzbekistan international Alexandr Geynrikh, while he pushed centre-half Mato forward, however there would be no clear-cut openings and no breakthrough for the visitors as Al Sadd wound down the clock.

Eventually after four minutes of stoppage-time, Al Sadd could celebrate clinching their place in the final where they'll meet Jeonbuk Motors in Korea as the Qataris try to win their first Asian crown since 1989.

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