Shanghai Shenhua 1-0 Beijing Guoan
China Super League Round 11
Giovanni Moreno 63′
Shanghai Shenhua secured victory in the China derby on Sunday night with a 1-0 victory over Beijing Guoan at the Hongkou Stadium, thanks to a goal from Colombian midfielder Giovanni Moreno.
The victory, Shenhua’s fourth consecutive success over the capital side at Hongkou Stadium, now leaves Guoan winless over their past five fixtures. Brazilian Andre Lima would also see red late in the game for a second yellow card after a clash with Shenhua defender Dai Lin.
Despite missing five first team players through a combination of suspension and injury, Guoan actually started brightly. Forward Joffre Guerron was denied a shooting chance by goalkeeper Wang Dalei, before Rolando Schiavi was forced into a fine interception to frustrate Andre Lima.
Lively attacking midfielder Zhang Xizhe was at the centre of much of the early Guoan pressure, and could easily have provided an opener for his side when his cross narrowly evaded both Andre Lima and Wang Hao.
Midway through the first half, Zhang was again almost the provider as a clever backheeled flick found striker Guerron at the near post. The Ecuadorian, though, could only place his shot wide of the post with the goal gaping.
Shenhua, though, would come back strong before the break as the excellent Song Boxuan picked up the ball on the left flank and swung a wonderful cross into the area where the arriving Moreno crashed a header off the back post.
Within minutes of the second half getting underway, Guoan would have a golden opportunity to take the lead. The ever willing Guerron used his pace to good effect on the right flank, beating Bai Jiajun, before firing low across goal.
While keeper Wang Dalei was able to get gloves on the ball, his efforts only succeeded in laying the ball on a plate for Guoan midfielder Wang Hao. A remarkable last-ditch clearance from substitute Wang Changqing, though, saved the day for the hosts.
Minutes later and that piece of wonderful defending paid dividends, as Moreno opened the scoring. A well worked crossing opportunity allowed Syrian forward Firas Al Khatib to float a ball into the centre towards the unmarked Colombian, and while Yang Zhi saved his downward header, he was left with a simple tap-in on the follow up.
With just under half an hour remaining, there was still plenty of time for Beijing to seek an equaliser, but the visitors struggled to mount meaningful attacks.
Indeed, it was Brazilian Andre Lima who would be involved in the final two moments of note in the game, as he first saw an improvised effort well saved by Wang Dalei, before being shown a red card for striking defender Dai Lin.
Lima will likely be joined in missing Round 12 of the CSL by Shenhua manager Sergio Batista, who was also dismissed in the closing minutes of the game. The Argentine, though, will likely care little after his side secured a hard fought victory over their traditional rivals.
Shanghai Shenhua: Wang Dalei; Li Jianbin (Wang Changqing 7′), Schiavi, Dai Lin, Bai Jiajun; Xu Liang, Wang Shouting, Song Boxuan, Moreno (Jiang Kun 90′); Al Khatib, Dady.
Beijing Guoan: Yang Zhi; Yu Yang, Xu Yunlong, Lang Zheng, Lei Tenglong; Wang Hao (Tan Tiancheng 71′), Yang Yun, Piao Cheng, Zhang Xizhe (Shao Jiayi 77′); Guerron (Li Hanbao 78′), Andre Lima.