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Guangzhou Evergrande look set for seventh championship as SIPG fall away: CSL round 23 highlights

A very big weekend of interesting results at the top and bottom of the Chinese Super League, as we enter the business end of the season. Guangzhou Evergrande now appear to have an unassailable 8-point lead over second-placed Shanghai SIPG. Here’s a round-up of all the action, as the league now takes an international break until September 8.

Yanbian Funde 0 – 4 Jiangsu Suning

In a relegation crunch match, the Korean ethnic team suffered a blow with defeat to Fabio Capello’s Jiangsu with former Chelsea man Ramires getting two late goals to pad out the scoreline. This important victory for the Nanjing side eases their relegation worries – in all likelihood they are unlikely to be relegated despite being only five points clear of the dangerzone. Yanbian on the other hand remain rooted to the bottom and are surely favourites for the drop.

Guizhou Zhicheng 2 – 1 Shanghai SIPG

Gregorio Manzano continues to work wonders at Guizhou, masterminding the newly-promoted team to a 5th consecutive victory, and once again proving to be the nemisis of Shanghainese football by consigning SIPG’s title hopes to the dustbin for 2017. Journeyman midfielder Wang Fan sealed the three points with a last minute goal.

Hebei CFFC 2 – 0 Beijing Guoan

The home side kept up their momentum in the hunt for an ACL place and brought to an abrupt end Beijing’s recent run of victories with Ezequiel Lavezzi getting on the scoresheet from the penalty spot. With six teams in the hunt for third place including these two, this was the proverbial six-pointer for Hebei.

Liaoning Kaixin 1 – 1 Tianjin Teda

In another clash between two teams deep in the relegation mire, the draw did neither team any big favour but both undoubtedly pleased to see Yanbian beaten again. Liaoning equalized ten minutes from time with a goal from locally-born midfielder Hu Yanqiang.

Shanghai Shenhua 0 – 3 Guangzhou Evergrande

Crisis club Shanghai Shenhua’s record in the past three CSL games now reads lost three, scored none, conceded 11 and is a new record for the club. Guangzhou Evergrande swotted Shenhua aside with absolute ease with returned hero Muriqui getting on the score sheet in this rather one-sided match. Defeat to Evergrande, coupled with cross-town rivals SIPG’s loss, lent comfort to home fans, however there was no hiding from another abysmal performance from one of the CSL’s most storied clubs.

Changchun Yatai 1 – 1 Tianjin Quanjian

It took a fantastic finish in the final minute goal from new signing Anthony Modeste to claw a point for big-spending Quanjian away to Changchun in what will be considered a point dropped for the Tianjin side in their pursuit of third place and an ACL spot.

Guangzhou R&F 1 – 1 Shandong Luneng

R&F’s home winning streak was ended by Shandong, after the home side painted their entire stadium gold several weeks back in an effort to bring good luck. Master marksman Eran Zahavi kept up his amazing scoring run from the penalty spot for R&F after a dive from Brazilian defender Renatinho fooled the referee.

Henan Jianye 0 – 0 Chongqing

A fairly dull game saw Henan maintain their 5-point buffer with the relegation zone and put Chongqing solidly mid-table.

A leading international commentator on Chinese football frequently quoted by the world's top media. Offers piercing and resolutely honest insights into the bustling crossroads where football, society, economics and politics meet in contemporary China. Based in Shanghai since 2005, observer of the Chinese game since 2000.

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