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2018 Chinese Super League
  • Cédric Bakambu (8', 83')
  • Eran Zehavi (12', 75')

Beijing Guoan salvage late draw to pull level atop CSL table

VCG via Getty Images

Cedric Bakambu scored seven minutes from time to earn Beijing Guoan a share of the points with Guangzhou R&F as Roger Schmidt's side pulled level with Chinese Super League leaders Shanghai SIPG on Friday evening.

Bakambu claimed his second goal of the game in the 83rd minute after a brace from Eran Zahavi looked set to seal the win for Dragan Stojkovic's side, only for the former Villarreal forward to head home from close range to secure a 2-2 draw.

The victory moves Guoan onto 19 points from 10 games, with leaders SIPG and second-placed Shandong Luneng due to play Guizhou Zhicheng and Tianjin Quanjian respectively over the weekend.

"I'm proud of the performance today, it was a very difficult game," Schmidt said. "We didn't play well in the first half. We didn't get into our rhythm, although we took the lead.

"Our defence wasn't as stable as it has been in the last few games and they didn't dictate the pace of the game as they have done. But we made a few changes during the break and the performance in the second half was better than in the first half."

Beijing were without Brazil international midfielder Renato Augusto, who missed the game because of injury, but the home side still took the lead with just eight minutes on the clock when Bakambu latched onto Piao Cheng's first-time ball into the box before shooting into the far corner.

R&F hit back four minutes later, however, when Zahavi volleyed home from inside the area while Renatinho was denied his side's second by the woodwork seven minutes before the interval.

Zahavi, last year's leading scorer in the league, doubled R&F's advantage 15 minutes from time when he side-footed the ball over the line from inside the six-yard box, prompting Beijing to throw everything forward.

Jonathan Soriano hit the woodwork twice soon after as Beijing grew increasingly desperate and, with seven minutes remaining, Bakambu steered his header home from close range to give Schmidt's side a share of the points.

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