2021 Group E: Persepolis Victorious over Al-Rayyan
- April, 18, 2021 - 08:36
- Sports news
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s Persepolis football team flexed its credentials as favorite as it came from behind to defeat Al-Rayyan SC 3-1 in Group E of the 2021 AFC Champions League on Saturday.
The Islamic Republic of Iran side turned on the power in the second half as they added to the 1-0 opening day win against UAE's Al Wahda FSCC while Al Rayyan were left in search of their first victory, having been held 0-0 by FC Goa on Matchday One.
Persepolis raced off the blocks and wasted no time in asserting themselves, coming close to opening the scoring after just three minutes when Vahid Amiri raced down the left flank and relayed the ball to Shahriyar Moghanlou, who found himself in a one on one situation with Al Rayyan goalkeeper Fahad Younis, but the forward was flagged offside.
The Iran Pro League champions continued to press with their free flowing passing but Al Rayyan were up to task with their sound defending.
Naif Al Hadhrami gave the Al-Rayyan a lead in the 19th minute with a header at the Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
An undaunted Persepolis pushed for the equalizer but Al-Rayyan goalkeeper Fahad Younis was at the top of his game, first saving Mahdi Torabi’s effort from inside the area on 24 minutes and then denying Shahryar Moghanlou’s drive in the 39th minute.
Persepolis started the second half with heightened intensity and its determination paid off two minutes into the restart when Kamal Kamyabinia headed home the equalizer off Torabi’s corner.
Al-Rayyan found itself 2-1 down two minutes later as Siamak Nemati weaved his way down the right flank before finding Moghanlou, who volleyed past Younis.
Moghanlou scored his second in the 57th minute, finding space inside the six yard box to collect Omid Alishah’s pass before slamming the ball into an unguarded goalmouth.
With the job done, Persepolis will now turn its focus to FC Goa on Tuesday while Al-Rayyan will seek its first win against Al-Wahda.