Jiangsu Sainty 0-1 Beijing Guoan
Chinese Super League Round 3
Joffre Guerron 19′
A first half Joffre Guerron goal was all Beijing needed to defeat Jiangsu Sainty and win its second straight road match, a feat Jaime Pacheco only achieved twice in two years in the capital.
Beijing Guoan has a very tough April ahead, with multiple league matches and three Asian Champions League matches this month. Jiangsu had the advantage of being at home in their Wednesday ACL match, though Guoan had to come from a Tuesday match in Tashkent. The Qatari referee also let them play for much of the match, rarely calling fouls throughout the match.
Both teams looked tired for much of the match, but Guoan despite their crazy travel schedule, the Beijingers were able to control the first half and scored the opening (and only) goal of the match. While the Men in Green dominated possession, much of it was in the midfield or their defensive end as once again Guerron looked like he wasn’t on the same page with the rest of the side. That said, it was a long Guerron shot from 30 yards out in the 18th minute that challenged the Jiangsu keeper and led to a corner kick.
Jiangsu’s Eleílson was out of the lineup making it easier for Guoan’s taller players and Freddie Kanoute got up high and headed the ball into the path of Guerron. It was a great effort by the Ecuadorian to beat the defender to the ball and knock it in.
The second half would see Sainty get back in the game, in the 49th minute a Ren Hang cross was just slightly too high for Hamdi Salihi, but it should have led to the equalizer. From then on, it was a nervous 40 minutes for Guoan fans as Jiangsu regularly pressured Beijing’s defense. However, time after time, Guoan’s defense, be it Xu Yunlong, Darko Matic, or a resurgent Lang Zheng, turned away the Jiangsu attack.
It was a great road win for the Beijingers, who now have to return quickly to Beijing for a midweek ACL match against Bunyodkor. The capital side is on a role, having yet to lose a match in 2013, it’s exciting times for Guoan, while those in Nanjing need to be concerned as their side has had some ACL success but has struggled in the league this season.