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  • Ahmed Saleh

Al Hilal secures dominant 6-0 victory against Mumbai City FC

RIYADH — In a dazzling performance at King Fahd International Stadium, Al Hilal achieved a commanding 6-0 victory against Mumbai City FC in Group D of the 2023/24 AFC Champions League, earning three valuable points.

Serbian players Aleksander Mitrovic and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic took center stage, contributing four of the six goals. They capitalized on the creative efforts of Mohamed Al Burayk and Saud Abdulhamid, who played pivotal roles in the first four goals, exemplifying the strength of the four-time AFC Champions League champions.

Jorge Jesus' team wasted no time, initiating the scoring in the fifth minute when Mohamed Kanno exploited a Mumbai City midfield error to trigger a left-flank attack. Mitrovic, left unmarked, calmly slotted in the first goal from Al Burayk's precise cross.

Despite Salem Al Dawsari's spectacular goal appearing to double the lead, VAR intervened, overturning the decision due to the ball going out earlier.

Mumbai City FC managed a break against the run of play, with Lalengmawia Ralte's attempt thwarted by the well-positioned Mohamed Al Owais.

Just before halftime, Mitrovic attempted an audacious 60-yard strike, but Mumbai City keeper Phurba Lechenpa comfortably caught the ball.

The second half saw a barrage of Al Hilal chances, with Mitrovic, Kanno, Malcolm, and Al Dawsari missing opportunities. Rostyn Griffiths had a golden chance for Mumbai City FC, heading narrowly wide from Greg Stewart's free-kick.

In the 67th minute, Al Burayk and Mitrovic combined again, with a clinical header from the Serbian. Eight minutes later, Milinkovic-Savic marked his AFC Champions League debut with a headed goal from Abdulhamid's cross.

Mitrovic completed his hat-trick at the 80th minute with an extravagant overhead kick from Abdulhamid's delivery. Two minutes later, Mitrovic turned provider for Al Burayk, who confidently struck the ball, securing the fifth goal for Al Hilal.

Abdulelah Al Malki added the finishing touch with a spectacular long-range strike, sealing a remarkable second-half performance by Al Hilal.

Looking ahead, Mumbai City FC will host Al Hilal at the DY Patil Stadium in two weeks, needing a crucial win to bolster their slim chances of advancing to the knockout rounds.

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