Preview - Group H: Gamba Osaka’s Matsnunami wary of improving Chiangrai ahead of AFC Champions League clash
Tashkent: Masanobu Matsunami has called for focus from his Gamba Osaka side ahead of the first of two AFC Champions League clashes against Thailand’s Chiangrai United.
Gamba are former Asian champions and the Japanese club with the most AFC Champions League campaigns, while Chiangrai are appearing in the group stage for just the second time, but the gulf in historical success will count for little when they meet at Bunyodkor Stadium.
Chiangrai are one point adrift of Gamba, fresh from an important win against Tampines Rovers, and buoyed after giving K League champions Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors a scare in a 2-1 defeat last Friday.
Vote for your Best Goal of 2021 AFC Champions League Matchday Two (East)
Bangkok: The goals rained in on Matchday Two of the 2021 AFC Champions League (East) with an incredible 34 spread across the 10 matches in Bangkok, Buriram and Tashkent.
There was plenty of quality, too, and the-AFC.com has picked five of the best for you to choose your favourite from the latest round of fixtures, so cast a vote at the foot of the article to let us know!
Preview - Group H: Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors' Kim calls for focus ahead of AFC Champions League encounter with Tampines Rovers
Tashkent: Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors head coach Kim Sang-sik vowed to make the most of the two-way tie against Singapore’s Tampines Rovers ahead of their first game on Matchday Three of the 2021 AFC Champions League on Thursday.
The Korea Republic side go into this match second in Group H behind Japan’s Gamba Osaka, while Tampines Rovers are bottom with no points after two losses.
Preview - Group G: Johor Darul Ta’zim raring to lock horns again with Pohang Steelers in AFC Champions League showdown
Bangkok: Benjamin Mora firmly believes that Malaysia's Johor Darul Ta’zim can bounce back against Korea Republic’s Pohang Steelers in Group G of the 2021 AFC Champions League at the Rajamangala Stadium on Thursday.
Johor Darul Ta’zim started promisingly against the Koreans on Monday, taking the lead only for Pohang to bounce back for a resounding 4-1 win to move second the standings, three points ahead of the Malaysian champions.
Group J: Cerezo Osaka fight back to deny Port FC AFC Champions League triumph
Buriram: Tatsuhiro Sakamoto came off the bench to salvage a point for Cerezo Osaka at the Buriram Stadium on Wednesday as he cancelled out Pakorn Parmpak’s freak first half goal and earned Levir Culpi’s side a 1-1 draw with Port FC in Group J of the AFC Champions League.
Sakamoto’s one-two with Hiroshi Kiyotake opened up the stubborn Port defence to allow the Japan international to fire low past substitute goalkeeper Watchara Buathong and ensure the J.League side remained unbeaten as the group phase reached the halfway stage.
Group J: Damjanovic extends AFC Champions League record as Kitchee SC defeat Guangzhou FC
Buriram: Dejan Damjanovic scored for the third game in a row to further extend his all-time record as the AFC Champions League’s leading scorer and steer Kitchee SC to a 1-0 win over Guangzhou FC at Buriram Stadium in Group J of this year’s competition on Wednesday.
The Montenegrin stroked home a penalty nine minutes from the end of a first half dominated by the Hong Kong Premier League champions to take his overall tally in the competition to 39 goals.