Inter-Zone Final - 2nd Leg: Altyn Asyr 1-1 4.25 SC
Ashgabat: Altyn Asyr sealed their place in the 2018 AFC Cup Final after a 1-1 draw with 4.25 SC in the Inter-zone Final second leg saw them progress on away goals on Wednesday.
The sides had drawn the first leg 2-2 in Pyongyang and Vahyt Orazsakhedov’s second-half penalty was the decisive goal for the Turkmen after Han Song-hyok had given the visitors an early lead.
4.25 SC started brightly and went 1-0 up in the seventh minute. Sim Hyon-jin tested Mamed Orazmuhamedov in the Altyn Asyr goal and the keeper could only parry the ball into the path of Han Song-hyok who gleefully headed home.
The hosts responded with an excellent run and cross down the left from Altmyrat Annadurdyyev but Kim Chol-bom made a vital clearance at the far post.
But it was the visitors who threatened again in the 17th minute when An Il-born stole possession and ran forward before his 20-yard shot was saved by Orazmuhamedov.
Ten minutes later, Altyn Asyr had a decent effort on goal when Gurbangeldi laid the ball back to Resul Hojayev but the midfielder’s powerful drive from 25 yards was just too close to the goalkeeper.
Kim Yu-song then missed a golden opportunity to make it 2-0 when he fired wide after being put through on goal by Sim Hyon-jin’s excellent through ball in the 36th minute,
On the stroke of half-time, the home side had the perfect chance to equalise when Orazsakhedov went clean through. His dinked effort beat An Tae-song but drifted wide of the post.
Altyn Asyr were almost made to pay for that miss early in the second half when 4.25 SC were awarded a penalty for a foul on Kim Yu-song. But An Il-born’s spot-kick was well saved by Orazmuhamedov.
Hojayev then rifled another long-range shot at the 4.25 SC goal but An Tae-song pushed it wide for a corner.
And it was the hosts who were given a penalty in the 64th minute after Serdar Annaorazov was chopped down by Kim Bol-chom. Orazsakhedov made no mistake from the spot to put his side ahead in the tie on away goals.
As the game swung from end to end, Annadurdyyev thundered in a 20-yard shot that flashed wide.
Despite their need to find a goal, 4.25 SC struggled to make any clear chances as Altyn Asyr worked hard to keep them at bay.
They withstood some late pressure and can now look forward to a meeting with Iraq’s Air Force Club in the final on October 27.