Al-Hilal routs Al-Duhail 7-0 to reach ACL final

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DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Former Manchester United striker Odion Ighalo scored four goals as titleholder Al-Hilal of Saudi Arabia advanced to the final of the Asian Champions League with a 7-0 rout of Qatar’s Al-Duhail on Sunday.

The four-time continental champion will meet Urawa Reds of Japan in the two-legged final in April and May.

Despite Al-Duhail having the advantage of playing at Qatar’s Al Thumama Stadium, the 18-time Saudi Arabian champion scored five times in the first half of the semifinal game.

Ighalo found the target twice in the opening 10 minutes as Al-Hilal quickly took control. The Nigeria striker’s first came with just 90 seconds on the clock. The second was a well-taken shot after a smart pass from Michael Delgado.

After 14 minutes Moussa Marega made it 3-0 and the Mali forward added his second just before the half hour.

Seven minutes before the break, Salem Al-Dawsari scored a fifth goal for Al-Hilal, which is seeking to win a fifth Asian title and extend its own record, with a curling shot from just inside the area.

The goals kept coming in the second half. Ighalo scored his third soon after the restart and his fourth in the 63rd minute.

The final between Al-Hilal and Urawa will be their third meeting at that stage in six years. Urawa won its second title in 2017 with the Saudi Arabians lifting the trophy two years later.


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