Final, First Leg Toyota Player of the Week: Serginho
The summer signing's 70th minute strike was the 23-year-old's fifth consecutive goal in the AFC Champions League since joining from Santos and it could arguably have been among his most important as the J.League side head to Tehran two goals to the good.
Having netted against in both legs of the quarter-finals against Tianjin Quanjian of China and then again against Korea Republic's Suwon Samsung Bluewings, Serginho showed that West Asian defences were also fair game, with a deft finish past Alireza Beiranvand with twenty minutes remaining at Kashima Soccer Stadium.
Serginho also record two shots on goal and completed 34 passes to register an 8.7 rating to top the rankings for the Toyota Player of the Week.
Second in this week’s ranking is Seriginho's teammate Daigo Nishi(below), who put in an all-action performance for Kashima and as the club took a step towards lifting their maiden AFC Champions League title.
The full-back completed 55 passes, more than any other player on the rankings this week, and also recorded one shot on goal.
Although he was unable to repeat his goal-scoring heroics from the previous continental outing, when he netted away in Suwon, Nishi's 7.3 rating cements him the runner-up spot this week.
Completing the top three in the Toyota Player of the Week is another defender, albeit from the away side Persepolis, with Ali Mosleh(below), the Iranian sides highest ranked player this week.
The 25-year-old was in impressive form in both the backline and going forward, and was unfortunate to be on the losing side. Mosleh also totaled 26 successful passes as he earned a 7.2 rating.
Kashima Antlers goalkeeper Kwoun Sun-tae came fourth in the week's ranking with a 7.0 rating. The Korean kept a cleansheet, made two saves and completed 20 passes.
Rounding off the top five is Kashima midfielder Leo Silva, with the Brazilian opening the scoring at Kashima Soccer Stadium. Along with his vital strike - his second in the competition - his two shots and 40 completed passes sees him register a 6.8 rating.
Seyed Jalal Hosseini comes in sixth with 6.4, while Kashima's Jung Seung-hyun and Persepolis' Shojae Khalilzadeh complete the top eight with ratings of 6.3.