Japan’s Kashima wins Asian Champions League for 1st time

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Separated from male supporters, hundreds of Iranian women watched Saturday as Kashima Antlers of Japan won the Asian Champions League for the first time.

Kashima beat Iranian champion Persepolis 2-0 on aggregate after the second leg ended 0-0 in Tehran’s Azadi Stadium on Saturday.

Women have been mainly prohibited from attending men’s games and other sports events in Iran since the 1979 Islamic revolution.

Persepolis was unable to recover from its 2-0 defeat in Japan a week earlier. Despite being backed by a sellout crowd of around 100,000 fans, Persepolis struggled to create chances.

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Kashima appeared content to sit back and protect its first-leg advantage with Persepolis toothless in attack.

Since the J-League’s inaugural season in 1993, Kashima Antlers has been by far Japan’s most successful club team, winning a record eight domestic titles.


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