In a thrilling clash, Al Nassr showcased their resilience with a late surge to secure a dramatic victory. Sultan Al Ghannam’s 88th-minute header leveled the scores, only for Talisca to nod in his second goal during injury time, putting Al Nassr back in front.
The pivotal moment arrived when Brozovic, set up by none other than Cristiano Ronaldo, sealed the win with a precise low strike from the edge of the penalty area. This victory cemented Al Nassr’s place in the upcoming draw on Thursday.
Adding to their strength, Al-Nassr announced the acquisition of Portugal midfielder Otavio from Porto. The Saudi team reportedly committed a substantial transfer fee of 60 million euros ($65.08 million) for the midfielder.
Otavio, 28, arrives with an impressive track record, having scored 31 goals in 283 games across all competitions during his tenure at Porto since 2014.
Despite the nascent stage of the 2023-24 season, Al Nassr faced a crucial encounter in Riyadh on Tuesday, a match that could potentially set the tone for their entire campaign.
Having secured second place in the Roshn Saudi League last season, Al Nassr earned a playoff spot. A showdown against UAE outfit Shabab Al-Ahli in a one-off game determined the team progressing to the group stage in the AFC Champions League.
While Al Hilal, Al Ittihad, and Al Fayha have already secured their spots in the group stage, Al Nassr aims to join this prestigious quartet. Their recent triumph in the Arab Club Champions trophy, defeating Al Hilal in the final on August 12, marked a historic achievement.
However, the current domestic season’s outset has been challenging, with Al Nassr enduring two defeats in their opening games, placing them at the bottom of the table.
The upcoming AFC Champions League match piles on the pressure as Al Nassr assumes the role of clear favorites, despite facing the reigning UAE league champions. The outcome of this encounter will undoubtedly have a significant impact on their journey in the tournament.