Kitchee stun Kashiwa; Guangzhou Evergrande march on

Gabriel Tan Gabriel Tan

Kitchee claimed their first win in the AFC Champions League on Wednesday after claiming a shock 1-0 triumph over ten-man Kashiwa Reysol.

Having been beaten in all three of their previous Group E matches, the odds were firmly against Kitchee against their more-illustrious opponents from Japan at the Hong Kong Stadium.

However, the hosts were handed a real advantage when Kashiwa were reduced to ten men just 15 minutes in, when Masashi Kasekawa was shown a straight red for a last-man foul on Alex Akande.

Still, it looked as though a draw was on the cards as neither side were unable to find the breakthrough until the second minute of injury-time, when substitute Cheng Chin Lung popped up with the winner to emerge as Kitchee’s hero.

Elsewhere in Group E, leaders Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors failed in their bid to seal their place in the Round of 16 as they lost 4-2 at Tianjin Quanjian.

Tianjin twice took the lead inside the opening hour through strikes by Wang Yongpo (8’) and Zhang Cheng (55’), only to be pegged back on both occasions as Kim Shin-wook (37’) and Adriano (67’) equalised for Jeonbuk.

But, with six minutes remaining, Anthony Modeste helped the Chinese Super League outfit reclaim the lead, before Alexandre Pato struck in injury-time to seal the victory.

Over in Group G, Guangzhou Evergrande stayed top with a comfortable 2-0 triumph over Jeju United.

Nemanja Gudelj opened the scoring in the 27th minute when he was picked out on the edge of the box by Alan Carvalho, and proceeded to send a first-time strike rocketing into the top corner.

And, ten minutes later, Alan was left unmarked to steer a header home from Yu Hanchao’s excellent right-wing cross and make sure of the three points.

Finally, Group G’s other game saw Cerezo Osaka and Buriram United share the spoils in an entertaining 2-2 draw.