News ID: 211615
Published: 0245 GMT March 13, 2018

Tractorsazi knockout chances in jeopardy

Tractorsazi knockout chances in jeopardy
Al Jazira goalkeeper Ali Khaseif (L) makes a brilliant save on Tractorsazi’s Mohammadreza Mehdizadeh’s (No. 16) header during a 1-1 draw in Group A of the AFC Champions League at Tabriz’s Yadegar-e Emam Stadium, northwestern Iran, on March 13, 2018.

Iran's Tractorsazi Tabriz continued its winless run after drawing 1-1 at home with Al Jazira of the UAE in their 2018 AFC Champions League Group A fixture on Tuesday, leaving the Tabriz-based side on the brink of elimination.

Tractorsazi started brightly and had a number of opportunities to go ahead in the first half, but was denied a goal by some stellar goalkeeping by Al Jazira's Ali Khaseif,

While the host enjoyed clear domination, it was Al Jazira which opened the scoring against the run of play, in the 44th minute. Brazilian star Romarinho latched on to an aerial pass from defender Musallam Fayez and slotted in the first goal of the match.

After the restart, Tractorsazi emerged with renewed vigor and urgency but the Iranians were let down once again by a combination of poor finishing and Khaseif's continued brilliance. Ehsan Pahlevan, in particular, had a glorious chance after going one-on-one with the Emirati goalkeeper but skewed his shot just wide of the right post.

Ertugrul Saglam's men did not lose hope, though, and their perseverance finally paid off in the 78th minute, when Farzad Hatami headed in Pahlevan's cross to equalize.

The final few minutes saw Tractorsazi bombard the Al Jazira box in search of a winner but the visitors held on to secure a point.

The Iranian side sits at the bottom of the group with two points after four games. Al Jazira, on the other hand, has a tally of five points and remains in contention alongside Al Ahli and Al Gharafa. 

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