Al-Sadd began their AFC Champions League 2022 campaign in Group E with a 1-1 draw against Nasaf of Uzbekistan in the matchday 1 clash played on Friday at Prince Muhammad bin Fahd Stadium in Dammam.
With this result, Al-Sadd recorded their first point in the group. Nasaf was the first to score in the 30th minute, through an own goal by Pedro Miguel, before Khoukhi Boualem equalised for Al-Sadd in the 55th minute.
The match witnessed the sending-off of Al-Sadd defenders Abdelkarim Hassan and Pedro Miguel in the 27th and 63rd minutes, respectively.
Al-Sadd started the game strongly and threatened early on through the combination of Akram Afif and Baghdad Bounedjah, but the Nasaf defence was able to contain the danger.
In the 27th minute, the Wolves went a man down when Abdelkarim Hassan was sent off for a foul as the last defender, just outside his side’s penalty box.
Just three minutes later, Nasaf took the lead. After a corner played in from the right, the ball went in off Pedro’s head.
After the halftime break, Al-Sadd came out with renewed desire and were able to equalise in the 55th minute, when Khoukhi Boualem headed in from a Santi Cazorla corner.
Things got more difficult for Al-Sadd in the 63rd minute, when Pedro was also sent off for blocking a Nasaf player’s attempt to begin a counter-attack.
Thereafter, Javi Gracia reorganised the team’s shape with his substitutions, bringing on Mohammed Waad, Tarek Salman and Salem Al-Hajri.
Nasaf went on to apply a lot of pressure on nine-man Al-Sadd, but Gracia’s side was successful in putting up a strong resistance and the match went on to end in a 1-1 stalemate.
Al Sadd x Nasaf (Matchday 1 – AFC Champions League 2022 Group E)
Prince Muhammad bin Fahd Stadium
Al-Sadd: Meshaal Barsham, Pedro Miguel, Abdelkarim Hassan, Khoukhi Boualem, Guilherme Torres, Jung Woo-young, Ali Asad, Santi Cazorla, Akram Afif, Baghdad Bounedjah
Nasaf: Omidjon Ergachev, Alibek Davernov, Hasanuddin Aliko Love, Shrov Muhidinov, Dilshud Saitov, Shakhzod Akramov, Akmal Mozgovoi, Obek Bozorov, Marko Stanovevich, Umarbek Ichmodorov, Samir Smaylavich
Pedro Miguel 30′ (own goal)
Khoukhi Boualem 55′
Abdelkarim Hassan 27′ (red card)
Pedro Miguel 63′ (red card)
Referee: Hanna Hattab
Assistant 1: Ali Ahmad
Assistant 2: Mazen Zazfoun
Fourth official: Baraa Kamal