Shanghai SIPG made it two wins from two at 2020 AFC Champions League matches after defeating Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors 2-1 in Group H yesterday.
Vitor Perreira’s men had opened their campaign with a similar result at the expense of Sydney FC on Thursday, while their Korean opponents had already played twice before the stoppage, losing to Yokohama F. Marinos and drawing 2-2 against Sydney FC in March.
A bright start from both sides at Khalifa International Stadium saw end-to-end action and several half chances created inside the opening 10 minutes, most notably Gustavo’s header for Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors which was saved by the goalkeeper.
The first goal of the evening arrived in the 11th minute and it was Shanghai SIPG who broke the deadlock after a long kick from goalkeeper Chen Wei made its way over the Jeonbuk defenders finding Lyu Wenjun clear on goal. The forward kept his composure to control and apply an accurate finish into the bottom corner.
Brazilian striker Gustavo marked his AFC Champions League debut with a goal to restore parity in the 24th minute. A good passing exchange down the right flank was followed by a defence-splitting diagonal ball from Kim Bo-kyung and Gustavo beat his marker to stab the ball home and make it 1-1.
Shanghai SIPG made a double substitution at half-time, bringing on midfield duo Oscar and Aaron Mooy. The latter looked to make an immediate impact after receiving Chen Binbin’s pass inside the box and firing towards goal only to be denied by the fist of goalkeeper Song Bum-keun 50 seconds after the restart.
At the other end of the pitch, Jeonbuk responded instantly with a double chance as Hong Jeong-ho’s long pass found Gustavo who advanced into the box and attempted to finish but Chen made the save before Ku Ja-ryung followed through with a shot from a tight angle that was again saved by the Shanghai SIPG goalkeeper.
Shanghai SIPG thought they had taken the lead again in the 56th minute when a string of quick passes around the box saw Yang Shiyuan cross for Mooy who chested it down and hit on the half-volley, but watched his attempt ricochet off the outside of the post.
With just eight minutes left on the clock, Oscar broke free from a counter attack and as he made his way his way towards goal, left Hong with no option but to bring him down inside the box, prompting the referee to point to the spot.
Substitute Hulk stepped up and smashed from the penalty box to hand Shanghai SIPG a second consecutive 2-1 win.
The result means Shanghai SIPG move level with Yokohama F. Marinos with six points from two games, with goal difference giving the Japanese side the top spot in Group H. Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors meanwhile find themselves level with Sydney FC with a point each at the foot of the group.
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