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Arab Club Champions Cup: ASFAR fall to Emirati club Al Wahda

After failing to score on their opponents in the first leg played in Morocco, current Botola Pro leaders ASFAR were eliminated from the 2023 Arab Club Champions Cup following a 3-0 defeat to Al Wahda of the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi. Facundo Kruspzky scored the opening goal in the first half before Brazilians João Pedro and Allan put the Emirati club beyond reach for a 3-0 aggregate victory. Al Wahda advance to the group stage of the competition with Wednesday’s victory.

ASFAR’s prolific attack was kept quiet in a scoreless first leg played in Rabat and the Royal Army club continued to struggle against an Al Wahda side who finished third in the recently completed UAE Pro League. After the Moroccan team attempted to push forward and find a breakthrough in the opening minutes, the visitors experienced a setback in the 17th minute. Suhail Salem received a pass on the left flank and floated a cross towards the far post where Kruspzky jumped over ASFAR left back Emmanuel Imanishimwe and placed his header perfectly past goalkeeper Ayoub Boulbir for the Argentinean’s sixth goal in all competitions.

Wahda doubled their lead early in the second half from a set piece. Former Portugal national team midfielder Adrien Silva played a corner kick to the far post for Kruspzky to head towards goal. João Pedro was waiting near the goal line and got a slight touch to the ball to redirect past Boulbir. In the final seconds the hosts added one more when former Everton and Napoli midfielder Allan got behind the ASFAR defense and lifted a clever finish over the advancing Boulbir.

Below is a video of the goals from the second leg. ASFAR return to Botola Pro action on Monday with a crucial match against Rabat rivals FUS that has serious implications for the title race. Al Wahda will have more matches against African clubs in Group D where they are grouped with Raja CA, Algeria’s CR Belouizdad and either FC Nouadhibou of Mauritania or Kuwait Sports Club.


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