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ACL: Esteghlal Wants to Win Group by Avoiding Loss to Al Hilal

Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia v Esteghlal

Tasnim - Bottom faces top in Group D of the AFC Champions League when Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia takes on Iran’s Esteghlal at Kuwait Sports Club Stadium on Monday.

Esteghlal is already assured of a place in the next round having beaten Al Rayyan 2-0 in early April, but the Iranian side must avoid defeat to win the group.

The two-time continental champion, who is without suspended duo Rouzbeh Cheshmi and Omid Ebrahimi, warmed up for the game with a 1-1 draw against Gostaresh Foolad Tabriz in the Iranian league last week.

Runner-up last year, Al Hilal’s form has dropped dramatically this time round and its 2-1 defeat in Al Ain on Matchday Five confirmed its early elimination.

The Saudi side goes into the game on a high, though, after a 4-1 win over Al Fateh secured the Saudi Pro League title on Thursday. Ali Al Bulayhi misses the game through suspension.

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