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We wanted more goals, says match-winner Ali

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Doha: Almoez Ali got the only goal of the game in Al Duhail's 1-0 win over Persepolis in the first leg of the AFC Champions League quarter-finals on Tuesday, but the youngster has expressed his team's regret at not being able to score more. 

In a cagey encounter between the Qatari and Iranian champions at Khalifa International Stadium, chances were at a premium all evening. Al Duhail had to eventually settle for the slender advantage provided by Ali's 15th-minute goal, which saw him head in at the back post following Edmilson's cross from the left.

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"We managed to get a goal in the first half. We wanted two or three goals but fate wasn't in our favour," remarked Ali. "The next step for us now is to focus on our next game in the league, go to the national team camp and then return to play Persepolis again in the second leg."

The three-week gap before the second leg could provide ample time for Nabil Maaloul's men to improve and put up a better showing in Tehran.

"There are games coming up in which we can improve," Ali said. "Hopefully, we can prepare ourselves well for the second leg and turn out better than we did today."

Al Duhail took to the field for the first leg without three of their first-team regulars and Ali felt that his team needed more work to adjust to the changes.

"Of course, we missed Youssef (Msakni), Ismail (Mohammad) and Karim Boudiaf. What we have to do now is to work harder, try to get in sync with each other and give all we have for the team.

"We need to make use of the chances we get; you saw today we had chances come our way but we failed to use them because of simple errors at the end of the moves."

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