Al-Hilal, from the Saudi Pro League, now have seven points from three games, tying with Navbahor, after the Uzbekistan side overcame Iranian visitors Nassaji Mazandaran, who had initially taken the lead through a goal from Mohammedreza Azadi just before the halftime break. However, Oston Urunov leveled the score in the 74th minute, and Mehrdad Abdi’s own goal in added time secured Navbahor the victory.
The Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal maintained their top position in Group D of the Asian Champions League with a resounding 6-0 victory over Mumbai City FC in Riyadh on Monday, thanks to Aleksandar Mitrovic’s hat-trick.
Within the first five minutes, Mitrovic put Al-Hilal in the lead with a goal from close range, and he doubled their advantage in the second half.
This broke Mumbai’s strong resistance, as Sergej Milinkovic-Savic headed in a third goal in the 75th minute, followed by Mitrovic’s spectacular overhead kick that completed his treble five minutes later.
In the 82nd minute, Mohammed Al Burayk added the fifth goal, and Abdulelah Al Malki scored the sixth goal from a distance during added time.
“We lost 6-0, which was not our intention coming here,” said Yoell van Nieff, Mumbai’s Dutch midfielder.
“We could have done better when we had possession of the ball. Maintaining ball possession is the key,” he added.
“Al-Hilal possesses a lot of quality, so credit goes to them,” he concluded.
Only the 10 group winners are guaranteed a spot in the knockout rounds, where they will be joined by the three best runners-up from both the east and west regions of the continent.
Sharjah, representing the United Arab Emirates, claimed the top spot in Group B, ahead by one point, after a narrow 1-0 win against Uzbekistan’s Nasaf. Caio Lucas scored for Sharjah just before halftime, but late in the game, Majed Hassan received a second yellow card, putting Sharjah under pressure. In added time, goalkeeper Adel Al Hosani saved Azizbek Amonov’s penalty, denying Nasaf the chance to equalize. Nasaf remains in second place with six points, while Al Sadd from Qatar is in third place following their 6-0 victory over 10-man Al Faisaly, with Baghdad Bounedjah completing a hat-trick after Nizar Al Rashdan was sent off late in the first half.
In Group C, Saudi Arabia’s Al Ittihad secured a 1-0 win over Iraq’s Air Force Club with an injury-time goal from Abderrazak Hamedallah, maintaining a two-point lead over Iran’s Sepahan, who achieved a 3-1 victory over the Uzbek side AGMK, with Ramin Rezaeian scoring twice.
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