Asamoah Gyan’s Al Ain to face Saudi Arabian giants Al Ittihad in Asian Champions League quarters
Asamoah Gyan and his Al Ain teammates have drawn Saudi Arabian giants Al Ittihad in the quarter-finals of the Asian Champions League which is a repeat of the 2005 final.
Wednesday’s draw in Kuala Lumpur, will see Al Ain host the first leg on August 19 at the Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium before they travel to the the King Abdullah Sports City Stadium on August 26 for the reverse fixture.
Al Ain reached the last-eight after eliminating UAE rivals Al Jazira 4-2 over two legs, while Ittihad defeated Saudi rivals Al Shabab 4-1.
Traditionally power-houses of their respective leagues, both Al Ain and Al Ittihad have endured frustrating domestic campaigns.
Eight-time Saudi champions Ittihad finished their league season in seventh place while 11-time UAE winners Al Ain ended the Arabian Gulf League in sixth. However, a late season flourish from Al Ain resulted in the club lifting the President’s Cup to ensure entry into next season’s Champions League.
During their meeting in 2005, Al Ittihad defeated Al Ain 5-3 on aggregate to become the first and only side to defend the Asian title. Two years prior, Al Ain won their solitary Champions League trophy with a 3-0 aggregate victory over Thai club BEC Tero Sasana.
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