A high scoring round nine saw Dalian Aerbin, Qingdao Jonoon, Harbin Yiteng and Yanbian Changbaishan all pull away from the chasing pack with wins. Guizhou Zhicheng and Wuhan Zall both scored upset victories over Beijing BG and Hebei CFFC, respectively, and 2014’s League One coach of the year returns to stop Tianjin Songjiang’s losing streak.
Qingdao Jonoon 2-1 Xinjiang
Although Xinjiang’s midweek CFA Cup upset over Guangzhou Evergrande trumped Jonoon’s elimination of Changchun, the home side came into this game as favourites and eventually prevailed thanks to a flurry of late goals
86 minutes into what had been a largely uneventful game, Xinjiang goalkeeper Zhu Zisen was given his marching orders for bringing down Ismael Fofano in the penalty area. Wang Jun scored from the spot for the third time this season but Dong Zhiyuan looked to have rescued an unlikely point for the visitors with an 89th minute free kick.
However, it wasn’t to be as Song Long still had time to grab a late winner and stretch Jonoon’s league winning run to four on the bounce. Significantly, Jonoon were able to keep Xinjiang forward Cristian Danalache from finding the net for the first time in six league games to guarantee the Romanian an unhappy return to the club he played for last season.
Guizhou Zhicheng 1-0 Beijing BG
Yves Ekwalla Herman’s fifth goal of the season (celebrating in main image) was enough to condemn BG to defeat and further dent their chances of promotion. After home victories over local rivals Hebei CFFC and Shijiazhuang Ever Bright in the league and cup, BG were hoping to continue their excellent week but Herman’s 42nd minute strike gave Zhicheng the surprise win.
The visitors dominated the second half but couldn’t find the net. BG have now taken just two points from four away games this season, while Zhicheng have slowly adjusted to life in League One and have now earned seven points in their last three games.
Hebei CFFC 2-3 Wuhan Zall
A bizarre own goal and a wonderful solo effort from young forward Kang Zhenjie helped secure a surprising win for Wuhan in Hebei. Each side came into the game minus a key foreign attacker – Miroslav Radovic for Hebei and Brice Jovial of Wuhan – but it took just 14 minutes for Ransford Addo to find the net and give the visitors the lead. The Ghanaian centre back hooked in a pass from Rafa Jorda to score his second goal in as many games but Hebei were level within four minutes thanks to Luo Senwen who struck a sweet 20 yard volley following Ai Zhibo’s defensive header.
However, Wuhan got a touch of fortune in the 38th minute when Hebei centre forward Abdulrahim Laajab put through his own net. Wuhan’s Li Hang floated an over hit free kick in to the penalty area and, under no pressure, the big Norwegian showed the kind of deft touch which has deserted him at the right end of the field this season by nudging a perfectly weighted header past goalkeeper Yang Cheng.
But, while Zall’s second goal may have been lucky their third was sublime as Kang Zhenjie netted his first league goal with a wonderful dribble. The 22-year-old was only in the line-up to replace Jovial and his effort all but sealed Wuhan’s victory.
The drama was not over, however, as Ai Zhibo gave away a soft penalty for a shove on Song Wenjie in the penalty area. Following several minutes of unjust protestations, Nenad Milijas made no mistake from the spot but the visitors were able to hold on for their first away win of the season.
Shenzhen FC 1-3 Dalian Aerbin
Dalian recovered from a recent dip in form to comprehensively defeat Shenzhen and maintain their place at the top of the table. Mathias Ranegie poached the opener in the 36th minute and turned provider four minutes later to give Wang Jinxian the chance to double the lead.
Babacar Gueye pulled one back with a header two minutes before the hour mark and Aerbin were then able to absorb a period of pressure before Bruno Meneghel sealed Dalian’s first away win of the season with a fantastic 70th minute free kick. It was the Brazilian’s seventh of the season and it was enough to end Shenzhen’s six game unbeaten run in the league.
Yanbian Changbaishan 3-1 Hohhot Zhongyou
A Ha Tae-goon hat-trick allowed Yanbian to quickly put their 4-1 CFA Cup defeat to Tianjin TEDA behind them. The northeastern side had fielded a weakened team as TEDA handed them their first defeat of the season, but they were back to full strength here and proved too much for their Inner Mongolian visitors.
Ha opened the scoring in the 26th minute and doubled the lead seven minutes after half time. With Dori suspended, Wang Yunlong provided Hohhot’s primary attacking threat and he continued his strong start to the season by netting in the 59th minute. It was Wang’s fifth of the season, making him League One’s top Chinese scorer, but his achievement was massively overshadowed by Ha who completed his treble in the 71st minute.
Over 16,000 fans witnessed the South Korean tie Cristian Danalache’s league leading goal tally of eight on the way to helping Yanbian maintain their unbeaten record in the league. As well as being one point behind league leaders Dalian and Jonoon, Yanbian are also only one point away from matching their 2014 season total. Considering this season is only nine games old, that is a remarkable achievement.
Beijing Institute of Technology 3-3 Tianjin Songjiang
Newly appointed Songjiang manager Goran Tomic’s presided over a wild draw in his first game in charge as a pair of late penalties assured the points would be shared. Despite being named 2014 League One manager of the season, Tomic was unceremoniously released by Beijing BG in the winter and, earlier in the week, it was announced that he would be filling the vacancy created by Drazen Besek’s sacking.
It was fitting that the Croatian’s first game back in the league should be in the capital and things got off to a great start when Li Xingcan set up a Liu Qing goal in the 7th minute. However, the joy only lasted until the 24th minute when Andres Marquez headed in a Xu Wu cross. 11 minutes later the Uruguayan scored again with his sixth of the season but, within five minutes, Mario Lucio had levelled the scores to send the sides into the break tied at 2-2.
In the second half, the attacking verve of both sides was greatly diminished and BIT looked to have won the game in the 81st minute when Han Guanghui converted a penalty after a foul on Marquez. But the game was not over and four minutes from time Xu Wu was adjudged to have tripped the speedy Li Xingcan in the penalty area. The home side remonstrated with the official for more than three minutes but Mario Lucio was eventually afforded the opportunity to step up and give Tomic a respectable start by arresting Songjiang’s run of five straight defeats.
Harbin Yiteng 2-1 Qingdao Hainiu
Over 25,000 fans saw Yiteng toil to a victory over nine-man Hainiu in what was only their second home game of the season. After a scoreless first half, things started to go wrong for the visitors in the 49th minute when Wan Houliang was shown a second yellow card. Within seven minutes, the former Guizhou Renhe centre back was joined in the locker room by Djordje Rakic who was shown red for the same offence.
From that point on, a Yiteng win seemed inevitable and it took Yu Tao just four minutes to give them the advantage by heading in a corner. In the 82nd minute, Jair Reinoso headed in a Bu Xin cross to double the lead but Hainiu’s Korean winger Kim Seung-yong gave the home side a scare by pulling one back a minute later. The result keeps Harbin within one point of the top two, while Hainiu are sinking dangerously close to the relegation zone.
Jiangxi Liansheng 1-1 Hunan Billows
These two sides, placed fourteenth and fifteenth in the table, shared the points in a result that did neither of them any favours. Huang Jiaqing gave Jiangxi the lead after 26 minutes but Chen Zijie tied the scores in the 73rd to guarantee that both teams remained on only one league win for the season.
While Hunan can at least take solace in the fact that they have ended a run of three consecutive losses, the result will be particularly galling for Jiangxi who have now drawn their last three league games by giving up late equalisers. The Nanchang side’s huge 4-0 CFA Cup win over Liaoning last Wednesday is something to build on but, unless they can transfer that form to the league, an immediate return to League Two remains a real danger.