AFC Champions League Review: Al Sadd reach last 16 as Al Hilal crash out

Al Sadd, Persepolis and Esteghal are through to the knockouts of the AFC Champions League, but Al Hilal, last season's finalists, are out.

Al Sadd midfielder Xavi   -  Getty Images

Al Sadd booked their place in the last 16 of the AFC Champions League with a 2-1 win over Al Wasl on Monday.

Baghdad Bounedjah scored twice to secure their spot in the next round with one game to spare in Group C, despite Xavi seeing a goal disallowed.

Persepolis will join Al Sadd in the first knockout phase after battling to a goalless draw away to Nasaf, and a victory on matchday six would see them top the group.

Al Wasl, meanwhile, will hope to avoid six defeats from as many games when they meet Nasaf in a dead rubber.

There was a shock in Group D, though, as last season's runners-up Al Hilal crashed out of the competition with a defeat to Al Ain.

Mohamed Al-Burayk put the visitors ahead at Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium, but, after Omar Abdulrahman missed a spot-kick, Marcus Berg converted two penalties to send Al Hilal out at the group stage for the first time since 2006.

Iranian side Esteghal sealed their place in the last 16 by beating Qatar's Al Rayyan 2-0. 

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