<
>
2017 AFC Champions League, Group Stage
  • Júnior Santos (15')
  • Johnathan (32')
  • Ricardo Goulart (24')
  • Alan Carvalho (81')

Guangzhou Evergrande salvage draw at Suwon in ACL

Alan Carvalho's 81st minute equaliser secured a share of the points for Guangzhou Evergrande, papering over the defensive frailties of Luiz Felipe Scolari's side as the Chinese Super League champions were held to a 2-2 draw by South Korea's Suwon Bluewings in the AFC Champions League on Wednesday evening.

The Brazilian, who netted in the 7-0 win over Eastern on the opening round of the continental championship and scored the winner in the Chinese Super Cup against Jiangsu Suning at the weekend, struck with a delightful curling effort from just inside the area to salvage a point for Evergrande.

But Scolari will be far from pleased after seeing his side give away two goals from corners in the opening 32 minutes. Santos Junior's header was followed by a low strike from Johnathan either side of Ricardo Goulart's equalising volley.

Guangzhou's thumping 7-0 win over nine-man Eastern last Wednesday was put into some context as Scolari's team continued the struggles of Chinese sides in Suwon, where no club from the nation has ever won.

Evergrande were rarely threatened against Eastern. But the six-time Chinese champions faced a stern test against Seo Jung-won's team, who picked up their second draw in a row after sharing the points with Japan's Kawasaki Frontale last week.

Suwon took the lead after just 15 minutes when the Guangzhou defence was drawn towards the near post following Yeom Ki-hyun's corner from the right. Santos Junior was left to plant his header well beyond Zeng Cheng.

Guangzhou's defence had been caught out, and it was to become apparent the lesson from the first goal had not been learned.

That was not before Evergrande equalised, with Ricardo Goulart running parallel to the Suwon goal before receiving a return pass from Liao Lisheng. He then lashed his 24th minute dipping volley beyond the helpless Shin Hwa-yong.

It took just eight more minutes, though, for Suwon to reclaim the lead. The goal came from another lapse at the back that had Scolari fuming. Another corner -- this time from the visitors' left -- saw Evergrande lose concentration. Johnathan stole in to steer his shot home from the corner of the six-yard box.

Johnathan could have added another before the end of the half, only for his header to come back off the bar. Then, Guangzhou had Gao Lin almost level five minutes after the restart, sending his header in Shin's arms.

Yeom's free kick was tipped over the bar by Zeng as Suwon continued to pose a threat. But, as the clock ran down, the points started to look increasingly safe for the South Koreans.

Carvalho, however, had other ideas and, with nine minutes left, the shaven-headed striker moved the ball onto his right foot before whipping a beautifully struck curling shot around Shin and into the corner to level.

With only moments to go Paulinho had the chance to give Evergrande an undeserved win, only for the Tottenham man to snatch at his effort from 10 yards out and fire it high over the bar. And Goulart saw his free kick tipped over the bar in added time as Guangzhou finished the game on the front foot.