Al Gharafa sealed a crucial 2-0 victory over Ahal FC in Group C of their AFC Champions League 2022 league in Jeddah.
Qatar’s Al Gharafa secured the top spot in Group C in the Asian Champions League Group after a 2-0 win over Ahal of Turkmenistan, taking the team one step closer to securing the grand title.
The Malian footballer Cheick Diabate scored the starter with a spectacular header inside the six-yard box with a looping assist from Homam Ahmed, securing his first goal of the AFC Champions League 2022 after an hour of play.
Egyptian-Qatari Ahmed Alaa Eldin then sealed the match with a second goal three minutes from time with a cheeky corner.
⏰ FT | 🇶🇦 @ALGHARAFACLUB 2⃣-0️⃣ Ahal 🇹🇲
— #ACL (@TheAFCCL) April 10, 2022
The win takes the Qatari team onto four points, two points at the summit after two strong rounds in the competition. The group stages are currently being played in biosecure centralised hubs in Saudi Arabia for safety reasons due to the Covid-19 pandemic, according to Reuters.
Coached by the great Andrea Stramaccioni, the Gulf nation’s club moved to the top after Iran’s Foolad drew 1-1 with United Arab Emirates’s Shabab Al Ahli in Jeddah on Sunday.
Ahmad Noorollahi scored an own goal in the 83rd minute after Hamid Bouhamdan’s shot past the goalkeeper, but Iran’s top club nested a draw with the former finalists United at the end after Federico Cartabia leveled the score late in the match.
Now, both teams share the same points.
In Group D, Al Duhail SC got their first win in Group D of the league after Michael Olunga, the top scorer in last season’s competition, netted the winner against Sepahan SC at the King Abdullah Sports City on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Pakhtakor’s Khojimat Erkinov scored against Al Taawoun, giving them the first win in this year’s competition.
Now, all four teams in the section are level on three points.
Al Duhail will now face Uzbek Super League champions Pakhtakor in the early game.
Winners of the five groups in the stage will be guaranteed to reach the last 16, where they will compete against the three runners-up with the best records.