Guangzhou sent an ominous warning to the other Chinese Super League clubs after romping to victory over Changchun Yatai at Tianhe stadium on Sunday Evening.
The passion and intensity of the game was a good few notches down from Tuesday evening’s blistering encounter against Kashiwa in the ACL, yet Guangzhou barely broke into a sweat to record a fairly routine victory against a “no frills” Changchun outfit.
Changchun’s scoring chances can be summarised in one sentence, an effort ruled out for offside on 36 minutes and a defensive mix-up by Guangzhou during the 61st minute which allowed a one-on-one with Guangzhou’s Li Shuai who managed to deflect the shot for a corner.
Guangzhou took the lead in the 28th minute following some industrious work down the right flank by Muruiqui who, after beating several would-be defenders, crossed low for Cleo to slide home. Up until this point, there were murmurs amongst the locals that this game was heading for a 0-0 result.
The second half was far more one-sided with Guangzhou dominating and Changchun, well, disappearing.
The 2nd goal arrived in the 50th minute after more good work from Muruiqui, who was creating complete mayhem in the Changchun defence. After slipping past a number of defenders, Muruiqui picked out 2nd half replacement Conca (on for Jiang Ning) who, with his back to the goal, spun and rolled the ball into the net.
The game had become all but a formality with Guangzhou playing their usual possession, slick passing game and changchun chasing shadows. The 3rd goal arrived in the 67th minute with Muruiqui playing Gao lin through on goal only for an extremely under-confident Gao Lin to hit his shot directly at Changchun’s keeper. Fortunately for Guangzhou, Conca was on-hand to net the rebound. A 4th goal arrived on 81 minutes following some clever link-up work between Conca and Muruiqui, with the latter pushing his shot to the left of the keepers outstretched hand and bringing some lazy celebrations from the stands.
This was definitely an evening for Guangzhou’s 3 foreign musketeers who were clinical in an otherwise uninspiring contest. Guangzhou go top and is there anyone around to prevent them from claiming the 2012 Chinese Super League title?
Official attendance: 38,214 (with approximately 100 away fans).