Group J: Urawa Red Diamonds (JPN) 2-1 Wuhan Three Towns (CHN)
Saitama: Holders Urawa Red Diamonds kept their hopes of reaching the AFC Champions League™ 2023/24 knockout rounds alive after a last-minute Jose Kante goal helped them claim a nervy 2-1 victory over China PR’s Wuhan Three Towns in Group J on Wednesday.
Urawa went in front eight minutes before the interval at Saitama Stadium through an Alexander Scholz penalty, but Davidson equalised midway through the second half before substitute Kante struck a dramatic winner in the 90th minute.
The result leaves Urawa on seven points from five games to mean they will go into their final match against Hanoi FC next week aiming to secure a spot in the last 16 as one of the three best-placed runners-up while Wuhan have been eliminated.
Group F: Kitchee SC (HKG) 1-2 Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors FC (KOR)
Hong Kong: Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors FC kept their hopes of reaching the knockout stages of the AFC Champions League™ 2023/24 alive by registering a hard-fought 2-1 victory against Kitchee SC in their penultimate Group F outing on Wednesday.
Moon Seon-min and Song Min-kyu gave Jeonbuk a 2-0 lead at Hong Kong Stadium before the visitors went down to 10 men following a red card to Jeong Tae-wook late in the first half. Despite Jakob Jantscher halving Kitchee’s deficit in the 69th minute, the Koreans held on to claim the crucial three points.
Group H: Ventforet Kofu (JPN) 3-3 Melbourne City FC (AUS)
Tokyo: Junma Miyazaki’s 85th minute header earned Ventforet Kofu a 3-3 draw with Melbourne City in Tokyo on Wednesday that keeps the J2 League side on top of Group H in the AFC Champions League™ 2023/24 with one match remaining of the group phase.
Miyazaki directed Cristiano’s cross into an empty net after City goalkeeper Jamie Young misread the centre from the right in the dying minutes of a pulsating clash at the National Stadium.
The draw leaves Kofu on top of Group H ahead of City with eight points by virtue of a better goal difference, although both teams could be passed later in the day should Buriram United defeat Zhejiang FC in the later game.
Namangan: Missing one penalty, let alone two, can shatter the confidence of a player but Salem Al Dawsari is not your average player.
Having failed to convert from the spot in the 11th and 68th minutes, the Al Hilal SFC captain then grabbed the headlines with a stunning goal to seal the Saudi Arabian side's win against Navbahor of Uzbekistan in Group D of the AFC Champions League™ 2023/24 on Tuesday.
The 2-0 victory also secured two-time AFC Champions League winners Al Hilal their spot in the Round of 16.
Al Ain: Head coach Hernan Crespo was not worried despite Al Ain falling to a 3-1 defeat against Pakhtakor FC in Group A of the AFC Champions League™ 2023/24 on Tuesday.
With the UAE side having already qualified for the Round of 16 with two matches to spare, the newly-appointed Crespo used Tuesday's match at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium to give his fringe players match exposure.
Incheon: Head coach Cho Sung-Hwan said his Incheon United players showed great determination for their 2-1 win over Japan’s Yokohama F. Marinos in Group G of the AFC Champions League™ 2023/24 on Tuesday.
Incheon controlled the game, taking a two-goal lead before F. Marinos pulled one back late in the game, as the Korea Republic side reignited their chances of reaching the knockout stage.