Group H: Sydney FC (AUS) 3-3 Shanghai SIPG FC (CHN)
Sydney: Elkeson’s late goal denied Sydney FC their first win of the 2019 AFC Champions League campaign as Shanghai SIPG held them to a 3-3 draw on Matchday Three.
The draw ensured the China PR side stay two points above the Australians in the Group H standings.
There was a stunning start as Sydney scored after just three minutes. Siem De Jong brought the ball down on the edge of the SIPG penalty area and his low shot was deflected into the net.
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Oscar had an excellent opportunity in the 18th minute when a long ball from He Guan put him through on goal. But the Brazilian’s lob over Andrew Redmayne was too high.
The visitors got a deserved equaliser in the 27th minute when Oscar’s floated cross from the left was headed into the far corner by Lu Wenjun
But SIPG soon conceded again after He Guan was penalised for a handball in the penalty area. Adam Le Fondre smashed home the spot-kick to put the home side back in front after 32 minutes.
The score was level again just five minutes later when Yu Hai nodded home Hulk’s near-post cross from the right.
Sydney almost immediately retook the lead but Le Fondre’s shot was deflected off Daniel De Silva and onto the post.
As play swung to the other end, Redmayne had to save from Elkeson as SIPG ended the first half on the front foot.
The momentum stayed with the visitors at the start of the second half as Oscar fired a powerful effort just side.
But chances became harder to come by until Yan Junling saved brilliantly from Reza Ghoochannejad’s close-range volley in the 65th minute.
SIPG responded as Elkeson headed wide from close range as the game approached the final 15 minutes.
But the hosts managed to move ahead for the third time in the game when Yan Junling could only parry Reza’s header into the path of substitute Alex Brosque who poked the ball home from a couple of yards out.
Incredibly, SIPG netted their third equaliser of the game when Oscar stole possession and rolled the ball into the path of Elkeson who smashed the ball home from an angle in the 89th minute.
Sydney FC now travel to Shanghai for the return match on April 23 as the search continues for their first victory.
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