Al Sadd look to compensate for lost points


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It will be a repeat of the 2018 semifinal when Al Sadd host Persepolis in the second round of AFC Champions League Group D on Tuesday, 12th March. The kick-off is at the Al Sadd Stadium at 18:45.

Last year, the Iranian side had won 1-0 in Doha and went on to reach the final following a 1-1 draw in the return leg.

This time around, both teams go into the fixture on the back of disappointing results. Al Sadd were beaten 2-0 by Saudi Arabia’s Al Ahli on Matchday one, while Persepolis could only muster a 1-1 draw at home against Uzbekistan’s Pakhtakor.

Al Sadd’s Portuguese coach Jesualdo Ferreira knows the strengths and weaknesses of Persepolis very well. The Wolves, who are leading the QNB Stars League table at the moment, are sure to go all out and will look to capitalise on the home advantage.

Al Sadd are last in Group D, which is led by Saudi Arabia’s Al Ahli. Uzbekistan’s Pakhtakor and Persepolis are second and third respectively.

Al Sadd have players in the calibre of QNB Stars League top scorer and Algerian ace Baghdad Bounedjah, Akram Afif, Hassan Al Haydous, Asia’s best player Abdulkarim Hassan, South Korean midfielder Jung Woo-Young and Pedro.

Spanish midfield master Xavi Hernandez is back in training after an injury layoff, but is a doubtful starter. So is defender Boualem Khoukhi, who is also nursing an injury.

Incidentally, Ferreira and Akram were recently adjudged the best coach and player respectively in the QNB Stars League for the month of February.