WATCH: Chinese Super League Match Day 27: Cannavaro Gone?

By Jack Douglas and Tom Lamming, October 29, 2019

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With just one win in their last six, Guangzhou Evergrande’s lead at the top of the CSL has been slashed significantly, which could see reigning champions Shanghai SIPG do it all again and effectively win the league in Canton.

Evergrande came from two goals down to grab a 2-2 draw with tenth-placed Henan; a result that has seen manager Fabio Cannavaro suspended from his duties, according to Titan Sports.

SIPG meanwhile ran out comfortable 3-0 victors over Rafa Benitez’s Dalian Yifang, while a 3-1 win for Beijing Guo’an over local rivals Tianjin Teda keeps the Imperial Guards poised to strike should Evergrande and SIPG play out a draw when the two meet in November.

Guangzhou Evergrande 2-2 Henan Jianye

Guangzhou Evergrande fought back from 2-0 down at the break to salvage what could be a pivotal point at home to Henan Jianye. A Paulinho penalty and a Wei Shihao header rescued the Tigers, after first-half goals from Ivo and Christian Bassogog had Shanghai SIPG fans in dreamland.

Evergrande almost completed the comeback late in the game, when the seven-time champions were awarded their second spot-kick; this time after Ivo looked to have felled Yang Liyu. After another VAR check though, the referee reversed his decision and rightfully booked the striker for diving.

Never before has the cliche ‘game of two halves’ been more apt, as Henan should have had things wrapped up before the break.

Just two minutes in and the visitors were in the lead; Christian Bassogog combined with Brazilian Ivo to see the latter bundle in his sixth of the season.

Just before the break, Bassogog made it two; thanks in part to a hopeful long ball from midfielder Tim Chow and shocking defending from South Korean Ji-su Park. 

Chow’s punt forward was picked up by the Cameroonian on the right flank before he made his way into the area. Questionable defending from Park saw Bassogog seemingly have a free run at goal before curling in his sixth this term.

The game somehow finished 2-2; a result that, coupled with an awful run of form, may have cost Cannavaro his job down south.

Watch highlights of the game below (VPN off): 

Shanghai SIPG 3-0 Dalian Yifang

Straightforward result here for SIPG. Goals from Li Shenglong, Oscar and an unfortunate Zhou Ting own-goal saw Shanghai SIPG run out three-nil victors over Dalian Yifang at the Shanghai Stadium. 

Twelve minutes in and a sublime through-ball from Lu Wenjun allowed his partner in crime Li Shenglong to get in behind and prod home his seventh this term.

Moments later and Shanggang were two to the good thanks, in part, to a huge slice of luck from Dalian’s goalkeeper and left back. Oscar floated in a teasing delivery that enticed stopper Zhang Chong to come out of his goal, but the keeper could only palm it straight into the face of the retreating Zhou Ting and subsequently into the back of the net.

With what proved to be the last kick of the game, former Chelsea midfielder Oscar rounded things off for Shanggang after a brilliant passing move with summer signing Marko Arnautovic.

3-0 it finished, setting up what looks like another winner takes all clash for SIPG in Guangzhou next time out. Dalian find themselves sitting in ninth place.

Watch highlights of the game below (VPN off): 

Beijing Guo’an 3-1 Tianjin Teda 

Bruno Genesio’s team came up with a much-needed result after last weekend’s 2-0 home defeat against fellow title challengers, Shanghai SIPG. The result keeps the Imperial Guards third in the CSL, two points behind Guangzhou Evergrande and one behind the aforementioned SIPG, with three games to play. 

The much-maligned Cedric Bakambu opened the scoring in the capital after 25 minutes. 

Looking for back-to-back victories over teams from the capital, it was the visitors who got back on level terms 20 minutes after the restart. The dangerous tandem of Frank Acheampong and Sandro Wagner combined for the equalizer, with the former Bayern Munich striker on hand to flick home his 10th CSL goal of the season. 

Guo’an were quickly back in the ascendancy as Renato Augusto received a long diagonal ball in the six-yard box, before fainting one way and firing the ball off the post and in with his left foot. 

To finish the game off, the ball fell fortuitously to the feet of Augusto who slid in a marauding Bakambu, the striker burned through the gap between the Tianjin center back and left back. 

Knowing nothing less than perfection will give the Imperial Guards a chance at a first CSL title since 2009, Beijing Guo’an travel to face fierce rivals Shanghai Shenhua in the ‘China Derby’ next time out. 

Watch highlights of the game below (VPN off): 

Elsewhere… 

The CSL’s best of the rest faced off at the Nanjing Olympic Sports Centre, with Jiangsu Suning and Shandong Luneng drawing 1-1 courtesy of an injury-time equalizer from Luneng’s Dai Lin. 

Shenzhen battled back from a 3-0 home deficit against Wuhan Zall to draw 4-4 and pick up a potentially pivotal point in their battle for survival. 

Alan and Zhang Chenglin scored two crucial second-half goals as Tianjin Tianhai fought back from 2-0 down against a languishing Beijing Renhe, ensuring a two-point lead on fellow strugglers Shenzhen remained intact. 

Alan Kardec’s 14th goal of the season from the penalty spot was enough to see off Shanghai Shenhua 1-0 for Chongqing Lifan. 

A Marcao brace including a 98th-minute penalty secured Hebei a 2-1 victory over Guangzhou R&F, as Eran Zahavi’s 28th goal of the season was ultimately in vain.

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Image via Sky Sports

[Cover image via QQ]

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