After falling behind in the first half, Guangzhou R&F turned their pressure into goals in the middle of the second period to register their first ever away win against Hangzhou Greentown. Gilberto Macena put the hosts infront before a superb Lu Lin bicycle kick and a quickfire double from Abderrazak Hamdallah gave the Cantonese the win.
CHINESE SUPER LEAGUE ROUND 19
Hangzhou Greentown 1
Gilberto Macena 26’
Guangzhou R&F 3
Lu Lin 63’, Abderrazak Hamdallah 73’, 75’
Zhao Ming replaced suspended captain Zhang Yaokun at centre back for his first league start since 2011 whilst Sven continued his tinkering by bringing Lu Lin in for a rare start in an attacking midfield role. Hangzhou started with their pair of Brazilian forwards, Macena and Ramon, and only a last ditch block prevented the latter bundling in after a fluid Hangzhou attack down the left in the opening minutes.
Sadly the rest of the half didn’t live up to the early level of excitement with the ball spending too much time in midfield due to poor passing. Fans at the Huanglong Stadium had to wait 20 minutes for a shot on target and even then Lu Lin’s weak effort was easily saved by Gu Chao. Hangzhou would score with their first shot on target five minutes later though as the R&F defence backed off an advancing Macena who shot powerfully from twenty five yards to beat Zhang in the R&F goal.
The goal came against the run of what little play there’d been and the blue and whites continued to have possession without being able to create any chances as set pieces were under or over hit and Hangzhou looked secure enough in open play until half time.
The game picked up in the second half and Hamdallah almost drew the Cantonese level after fifty minutes but dragged his shot wide. Either side of that chance, Captain Wang Song went close with two freekicks for Hangzhou. The Cantonese were the better side though and when Wang Xiaolong replaced the ineffective Zhang Yuan after an hour they quickly equalised; Lu Lin controlled a lofted pass on his chest and executed a brilliant bicycle kick to make it 1-1.
The goal helped R&F’s confidence and sub Wang should’ve set up Hamdallah but overhit his pass on a breakaway. The Moroccan didn’t have to wait long to find the back of the net though as he was on hand to pounce on the rebound after Gu could only parry Jiang Ning’s shot. Hangzhou committed men forward to try and get an equaliser of their own but were instantly undone on the counter as Hamdallah refused to pass to his two unmarked teammates and instead twisted past Wang Lin to score his 16th goal of the season.
There were fifteen minutes left for Hangzhou to salvage something from the game and, perhaps remembering Jiangsu’s comeback at Yuexiushan, they changed to a more attacking style but this time the Guangzhou R&F defence held out for a much needed win.
Hangzhou Greentown: 1 – Gu Chao; 18- Zhao Yuhao (83 minutes 13- Cao Xuan) 32-Wu Wei, 30- Luka Zinko, 22 Wang Lin; 12- Luo Jing (62 minutes 11- Xie Pengfei), 8 Chen Zhongliu, 14 Feng Gang, 33- Wang Song; 9- Anselmo Ramon, 7 Gilberto Macena
Guangzhou R & F: 12 – Zhang Shichang; 20- Tang Miao, 15 Jang Hyun-Soo, 53- Zhao Ming (31 minutes 6- Xu Bo), 11 Jiang Zhipeng; 18- Zhang Yuan (59 minutes 19- Wang Xiaolong), 8 Park Jong-Woo, 10- Davi, 23 Lu Lin; 7- Jiang Ning, 9 Abderazzak Hamdallah (83 minutes 25- Aaron Olanare)