April 13, 2024


RIYADH: Cristiano Ronaldo guided Al-Nassr into the quarter-finals of the Asian Champions League on Wednesday because the Saudi Arabian aspect defeated home rivals Al-Fayha 2-0 to progress 3-0 on combination.


Nassr, who received final week’s first leg 1-0 because of a Ronaldo objective 9 minutes from time, have been the higher aspect at Al Awwal Park and took the lead on 17 minutes by Portuguese winger Otavio.


The previous Porto star, who joined Nassr final summer time, headed house from shut vary to attain in his second successive sport for the membership.


His compatriot, Ronaldo, seemed set to endure a irritating night time personally, with the Portugal captain having quite a few penalty appeals turned down and, not lengthy into the second half, a objective disallowed for offside.


Ronaldo, 39 earlier this month, was additionally booked in first-half stoppage time for a late problem, with Nassr supervisor Luis Castro then given a yellow card for protesting the choice too vehemently.


Nevertheless, the Nassr skipper would have the ultimate say, when 4 minutes from time, he latched onto one more Marcelo Brozovic by ball.


Fayha goalkeeper Vladimir Stojkovic actually ought to have handled the scenario however might solely kick his tried clearance off the onrushing Ronaldo. The ball fell invitingly for Ronaldo to faucet into the empty web.


It marked the previous Manchester United, Actual Madrid and Juventus ahead’s tenth objective in his previous 9 matches for Nassr. Ronaldo, a five-time winner of the UEFA Champions League, is competing for the primary time in its Asian equal.


Within the night time’s different West Asian tie, 2003 champions Al-Ain got here from a objective behind at house to Nasaf Qarshi to win 2-1 in stoppage time and seal their spot within the quarter-finals.


The UAE aspect, the one Emirati membership to carry the trophy, have been a objective down 5 minutes into the second half on the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium, once they did not cope with an inswinging nook, leaving Nasaf ahead Bobur Abdikholikov to prod the ball throughout the six-yard field. Teammate Akmal Mozgovoy completed on the far publish.


With final week’s first leg in Qarshi ending goalless, the Uzbekistan aspect had stolen a march on reaching the final eight.


But Al-Ain wanted solely 4 minutes to attract degree. Togolese striker Kodjo Laba stored his eye on a looping free ball within the Nasaf penalty space to acrobatically volley house.


The drama, although, was saved for the second minute of damage time. Nasaf goalkeeper Abduvohid Nematov someway contrived to punch a cross from the left to Sofiane Rahimi. The Al-Ain playmaker took one contact earlier than drilling house his effort to take the house staff by 2-1 on combination.


Al-Ain and Nassr, the latter semifinalists of their previous two Champions League campaigns, will meet subsequent month, throughout two legs, for a spot within the final 4.


Former Australia star Harry Kewell led Japan’s Yokohama F-Marinos into the quarter-finals after beating Bangkok United 1-0 in his first house sport in cost for a 3-2 combination win.


Brazilian Anderson Lopes transformed a penalty in added time on the finish of additional time to ship Yokohama by to face China’s Shandong Taishan within the final eight.


“It was troublesome but it surely makes it price it once you do create one thing particular for the membership by progressing into the ultimate eight,” stated Kewell.


“We’re trying ahead to the problem.”


Ulsan additionally superior to the quarter-finals and can play fellow South Koreans Jeonbuk after beating Japan’s Ventforet Kofu 2-1 for a 5-1 combination win.


Former Leeds and Liverpool ahead Kewell left his job as a first-team coach at Scottish champions Celtic to take up the reins at Yokohama final month.


Kewell received 58 caps for Australia, showing at two World Cups and successful the 2005 Champions League with Liverpool.