ACL: Iran’s Saipa down Minerva Punjab at Preliminary Stage 2

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Tehran Times – TEHRAN, Saipa football team from Iran defeated Indian Minerva Punjab 4-0 in a 2019 AFC Champions League Preliminary Stage 2 tie at the Shahr-e Qods Stadium in Tehran, Iran on Tuesday.

Arash Rezavand opened the scoring for Saipa in the eighth minute from the penalty spot and Arman Ramezani was on target for the hosts in the 24th minute.

Saipa scored two more goals in the second half with Samuel Sarfo finding the Minerva net in the 73rd minute while Rezavand scored his second goal of the match in the 81st minute.

Next Tuesday, Saipa will travel to Doha, Qatar to play Al Rayyan in the playoffs.

Saipa, coached by Iranian legend Ali Daei, have also been struggling in their domestic top competition, the Persian Gulf Pro League, but on Tuesday they were the far better side as they dominated the match throughout.

Despite the loss, Minerva will still remain in the continental stage this season as they still have an automatic berth in the AFC Cup, the second tier continental club competition. They will play the group stage of the AFC Cup from Group D, starting in April.


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