Pakhtakor edge Sepahan to go top
Pakhtakor went top of Group C in the AFC Asian Champions League as Alexander Geynrikh's second-half free-kick sealed a 2-1 win over Sepahan at Pakhtakor Stadium on Tuesday.
The hosts went in front after 38 minutes when defender Komoliddin Tadjiev, playing in a more unfamiliar central role, picked up the ball just inside his own half before embarking on a mazy run that left three defenders in his wake. He then shifted the ball to Artur Geykorian on the right edge of the box and a smart turn saw the winger cut inside the Sepahan full-back before drilling a left-footed shot under the body of goalkeeper Seyed Rahmati.
The visitors levelled in first-half injury-time when skipper Murod Khalmukhamedov misjudged a flighted free-kick from the right and an unmarked Ahmad Jamshidian steered his header into the far corner. But the Uzbeks claimed the points when Geynrikh - on as a substitute - scored with his first touch when his curling set-piece eluded everyone in a packed penalty area and bounced into the back of the net.
Al Ain picked up their first win of this season's competition after two early goals secured a 2-1 win over Al Shabab despite finishing the game with 10 men at Sheikh Khalifa International Stadium.
Emerson fired Jorge Valdivia's pass into the bottom corner to open the scoring after 14 minutes and Argentinian striker Jose Sand doubled the lead 10 minutes later when he redirected Valdivia's header. Abdulaziz Saran pulled a goal back in first-half stoppage-time before skipper Valdivia collected a second yellow in the second half, but the hosts held on to collect the points.