5 of the Best: Curlers
Kuala Lumpur: With AFC Champions League football on hiatus over the past two months, the-AFC.com has scrolled the archives to bring you some of the finest goals the competition has witnessed in its rich history.
This week, our '5 of the Best' series looks back at some of the most eye-pleasing curling efforts that have left outstretched goalkeepers with no chance and brought fans to their feet in appreciation. Once you've reviewed our selection, don't forget to vote for your favourite at the bottom of the article!
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Nam Tae-hee – Lekhwiya
vs Esteghlal Khouzestan, April 10, 2017
Now at Al Sadd, Korea Republic midfielder Nam Tae-hee has played his football in Qatar since 2012 and it was at Lekhwiya (now known as Al Duhail) that he is most associated.
The man who spent his formative football years in England and France has a knack for stunning goals and this curling, swirling effort against Esteghlal Khouzestan of Islamic Republic of Iran was a gem that left the opposing keeper nothing more than a helpless onlooker.
Oscar – Shanghai SIPG
vs Ulsan Hyundai, March 7, 2018
Oscar has made a habit of scoring spectacular goals since arriving in Shanghai in 2017 and the Brazilian classes this beauty against Ulsan Hyundai in 2018 among his favourites from the AFC Champions League.
Receiving the ball from Elkeson at the left corner of the penalty area, Oscar makes space for himself before bending an exquisite effort beyond the outstretched Oh Seung-hoon for his second in a 2-2 draw.
Mame Thiam – Esteghlal
vs Zobahan, May 15, 2018
The second leg of the all-Iranian last 16 clash between Esteghlal and Zobahan in 2018 was the Mame Thiam show, with the Senegalese striker netting a hat-trick in a 3-1 victory that saw hosts Esteghlal advance.
Thiam's second was one of the goals of the tournament, after he won the ball 30 yards from goal then sent a stunning left-footed arching shot into the top right corner to delight the fans at Azadi Stadium in what was a superb individual performance.
Serginho – Kashima Antlers
vs Johor Darul Ta'zim, March 5, 2019
Serginho's arrival ahead of the 2018 quarter-finals was arguably the signing of the season as he scored five goals in six games to help Kashima Antlers win the AFC Champions League for the first time. But none were as good as his wonder-strike on the opening day of the 2019 campaign.
Up against debutants Johor Darul Ta'zim, the Brazilian received the ball 35 yards from goal and, unchallenged, advanced forward before curling a fabulous effort in off the bar to put his side two up in a 2-1 victory.
Safawi Rasid - Johor Darul Ta'zim
vs Shandong Luneng, April 9, 2019
While Malaysia's JDT found the going tough in their maiden campaign, they also produced some moments to remember and in Safawi Rasid they featured a player who adapted to Asia's biggest club competition with minimal fuss.
Away at Shandong Luneng, the forward offered a glimpse of his capabilities, gliding past Wu Xinghan into a shooting position and then sending a sumptuous strike into the top corner with a goal that the fans voted the second best of the 2019 competition.
Vote for your favourite goal below (Poll ends at 1600 (UTC 8) on May 16).
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