Brave Persepolis to Meet Strong Al-Sadd at ACL Round of 16
- September, 26, 2020 - 18:25
- Sports news
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – It could be a tough test for Yahya Golmohammadi’s side but the Iranian team has previously showed it is a team to beat.
The 2020 AFC Champions League Round of 16 continues on Sunday with the first fixture of the day pitting Iran’s Persepolis against Al-Sadd at Education City Stadium.
Persepolis has made it to the knockout stage for the sixth time in their history, their most recent effort taking them all the way to the final of the 2018 edition, which they lost to Kashima Antlers of Japan.
This time around, Persepolis needed a win on Matchday Six to confirm passage from Group C, and they delivered in style after beating UAE Pro League side Sharjah 4-0, while Al-Taawoun’s late win against Al-Duhail meant Persepolis’ result took the team to the top of the group.
The two sides last locked horns in the 2018 AFC Champions League semi-finals, the-afc.com reported.
Persepolis took home a valuable 1-0 win from Jassim bin Hamad Stadium courtesy of a late Ali Alipour penalty, and it was able to hold to a 1-1 draw at Azadi Stadium three weeks later as Siamak Nemati cancelled out Baghdad Bounedjah’s goal for Al-Sadd, sending Persepolis into its first-ever final.
Al-Sadd cruised to the 2020 AFC Champions League Round of 16 with a game to spare, and after losing to Sepahan on Matchday Six, it finished second in Group C behind Al-Nassr with nine points. The Qatari side boast the strongest attack in the competition with 14 goals to its name so far.
Qatar’s most successful side in the AFC Champions League, Al-Sadd has appeared in the competition on 13 occasions, reaching the knockout stage six times prior to 2020, winning the title in 2011 and reaching the semi-finals in 2018 and 2019.
Sunday’s match will be the seventh encounter between Persepolis and Al-Sadd. The Iranians hold a marginal historical advantage with three wins to Al-Sadd’s two victories, while the 1-1 draw in the 2018 semi-final was the only such result between the two sides.