ACL Matchday 4 Day 2 Recap

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Persepolis FC v Al Nassr - AFC Champions League

Suwon Bluewings 3-1 Brisbane Roar

The K-Leaguers romped to an easy win over the visiting Australians to hold on to second place in the group.

Substitute Kwon Chang-hoon was the first to score in the 52nd minute with his low-angled effort, and not 10 minutes later Seo Jung-jin followed up with a goal of his own.

Brisbane’s hopes evaporated as Yeom Ki-hun added a third with his sailing free kick, but took home a consolation through Luke Devere’s late header.

Urawa Reds 1-1 Beijing Guoan
(74′ Makino / 33′ Yu Dabao)

An underwhelming Urawa Reds side managed to salvage a draw against short-tempered Beijing Guoan.

The visitors dominated in the first half, frequently forcing turnovers and finding the game’s first goal through Yu Dabao’s 33rd-minute header.

Urawa fought back in the second half and equalised when Tomoaki Makino rose above the ranks to head in a corner kick by Toshiyuki Takagi.

The hosts fought hard for a game-winner and seemingly got a boost when Guoan defender Lang Zheng was shown a red card for an incident off the ball, but the 2007 champions were unable to capitalise on the man advantage over the remaining five minutes.

Shandong Luneng 4-4 Kashiwa Reysol
(4′ Wang Yongpo, 34′ Junior Urso, 37′ Montillo, 49′ Yang Xu (PG) / 23′ Leandro, 29′ Kudo, 32′ 76′ Cristiano)

An explosive match in Jinan Olympic Sports Centre seemed to feature little defending as Shandong Luneng and Kashiwa Reysol slugged out a 4-4 draw.

A fourth-minute header by Wang Yongpo put the Chinese side up early, but Reysol responded with a trio of goals by Leandro, Masato Kudo, and Cristiano in a nine-minute span.

The lead only lasted for five minutes, however, as Junior Urso headed in Shandong’s second of the match and Walter Montillo found the equaliser from close range after Reysol were penalised for an illegal back pass.

Yang Xu’s penalty five minutes after the interval gave Shandong their second lead of the match, but the usually-profligate Cristiano completed his brace in the 76th minute with a free kick to end the game at 4-4.

Binh Duong 1-1 Jeonbuk Motors
(90+3′ Dieng / 30′ Eninho)

A gutsy draw wasn’t enough for the Vietnamese side as they officially became the first team to crash out of the tournament.

Eninho’s 30th-minute effort put defending K-League champions Jeonbuk into the lead, but Senegalese striker Abass Cheikh Dieng gave Binh Duong their first point of the campaign with his goal deep into injury time.

Jeonbuk remain on top of Group E despite the draw, beating Reysol on goal difference.

Persepolis 1-0 Al Nassr
(61′ Taremi (PG))

A Mehdi Taremi penalty kick was enough to see Persepolis through over their Saudi opponents.

100,000 fans packed Tehran’s Azadi Stadium for the match and were rewarded with several chances for the home side, including Hamidreza Aliagari’s well-aimed header in the 35th minute.

The lone goal of the match came after Al Nassr defender Mohamed Husain was called for a foul in the box, with Taremi delivering a cheeky Panenka to put Persepolis ahead.

Al Nassr nearly drew even in the 75th minute when Adrian Mierzejewski’s header bounced off the post; the Polish midfielder’s mid-range striker in the closing minutes was safely contained by Persepolis goalkeeper Sousha Makani to preserve the clean sheet.

Lekhwiya 1-0 Bunyodkor
(43′ Weiss)

After a dominant first half by the Qatari side, Vladimir Weiss scored the game’s only goal with just two minutes remaining before halftime.

Bunyodkor goalkeeper Akbar Turaev did well to deny Sebastian Soria a pair of goals late in the second half, but the Uzbeks were not up to the challenge of mounting a comeback and saw their chances of advancing to the knockout stage reduced significantly.

Lokomotiv 5-0 Al Sadd
(7′ 14′ Bikmaev, 54′ Shaakhmedov, 79′ Kojasevic, 90+1′ Koryan)

Desperately needing a win after taking one point from their first three matches, Lokomotiv rediscovered their momentum with a crushing 5-0 win over the Qatari outfit.

Striker Ikromjon Alibaev sent in two close-range goals early in the match, eventually sending the Uzbeks into the half time locker room with a 2-0 lead.

His brace was followed by Sanjar Shaakmedov’s 54th-minute strike from near the penalty spot, and a defensive error opened the door for substitute Damir Kojasevic to put his name on the scoreboard with 11 minutes remaining.

Fellow substitute Ruslan Korian added one of his own in stoppage time to complete the rout, knocking Al Sadd to second place in Group C and keeping all four sides in contention for the Round of 16.

Al Hilal 2-0 Foolad
(46′ Al Shamrani, 60′ Al Shahrani)

Al Hilal celebrated the return of striker Nassir Al Shamrani with a win against Foolad.

Last year’s AFC Player of the Year missed the first three group stage matches due to suspension, and wasted little time making his presence known when he headed in a goal just one minute after the start of the second half.

Teammate Yasir Al Shahrani made it 2-0 at the hour mark when he capitalised on a defensive error to take a low shot into the back of the net.

Al Sadd’s loss in Tashkent allowed 2014 ACL runners-up Al Hilal to take the lead in Group C through goal difference.