With only one win between them, Shanghai Jujusports hosted newly promoted Zhenjiang Huasa and shared the spoils in a forgetful affair at Shanghai Shenhua’s Kangxian training base.
CHINA LEAGUE TWO
Shanghai Juju Sports 1
Xu Jun 1′
Zhengjian Huasa 1
Cheng Peng 73′
Huasa, formed from the FC Barcelona Fan Club of China and having their first season in the professional leagues, were looking to steal a result that would give them a realistic chance of rising from the bottom of the table. With Juju Sports being one of those clubs within reach, Huasa truly gave themselves the worst possible start.
Within the first minute, a hopeful and hardly dangerous ball bounced off the side of a defender who should have cleared it easily. It dropped at the feet of a grateful Xu Jun, who slotted past a helpless Ma Chenrui in the Huasa goal.
It wasnt until after the first drinks break on this rather warm Shanghai afternoon, halfway through the first stanza, that Huasa had their first foray into the Juju Sports defensive area.
They struggled to maintain possession at all and resorted to long balls over a high Juju backline to which Gao Mingqi was offside to varying degrees, every, single, time.
Even though Juju Sports were the better side, their skill errors and ability to hold possession was not even enough to take full advantage. They seemed content with the scoreline and even spent long periods of the half playing the ball back to goalkeeper, Chen Nancun’s feet. The rest of the half was basically a stalemate as Juju Sports weren’t quick enough to move the ball when Huasa were stretched and Huasa didn’t have the ball for any meaningful length of time.
Thankfully Juju Sports took the initiative in the second half and had great chances too extend their lead before the drinks break. After some decent build up play, Yan Xinyu had a great chance inside the box and from a 45 degree angle only to be denied by a great Ma Chenrui save. Yan then had probably the best and most wasteful chance of the match after stripping his defender of the ball near halfway and running directly at goal before inexplicably shooting from outside of the box and missing by about 15 metres.
Directly after Cao Chuanyu’s header went wide from a dangerous freekick midway through the half, Huasa pushed forward and even had a penalty shout from their only meaningful foray into attack of the match. Within a minute they had a second penalty shout and this one was not to be denied. Gao Mingqi was finally onside and broke through only to be brought down approaching goal by Cao Chuanyu.
While Juju Sports player remonstrated with the referee, he dropped to the ground after bizarrely injuring a muscle in his leg and after minutes of treatment and being helped from the pitch, the 4th official took control of the match. His first action was to oversee Huasa’s Cheng Peng cooly slot the penalty past Chen.
It was a shock to Juju Sports who were definitely punished for not taking earlier chances. They would have one more chance in additional time to take the points after great cross from Yan Xinyu found a Juju toe in a crowded box but watched in dismay as it was spooned over the bar.
The result does nothing much for either side, who now share the bottom two positions in China League 2’s Southern group, Juju Sports holding a handy 5 point buffer.
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