Ghana striker Asamoah Gyan scored to hand Al Ain a vital 2-0 advantage in the first leg of their quarter final Asian Champions League tie against Al Ittihad on Tuesday.
The Black Stars captain struck in the 61st minute to increase the Boss’ lead before their home crowd at the Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium.
Gyan slotted in his 11th in the continental contest off a deft control after receiving a sublime lob from Omar Abdulrahman.
Defender Ismail Ahmed had given Zlatko Dalic’s side the lead three minutes into the restart after a frustrating opening 45 minutes for the hosts.
Al Ain’s persistence and determination proved too strong for the visiting Saudi club in the end.
The dethroned UAE champions now take a vital 2-0 lead into next week’s return encounter in Jeddah – more crucially by not conceding.