Vissel Kobe edge Suwon Samsung Bluewings on penalties to book AFC Champions League semi-final ticket
Doha: Vissel Kobe needed an extended run of a shootout but were eventually able to overcome ten-man Suwon Samsung Bluewings 7-6 on penalties after the 120 minutes ended 1-1 to reach the 2020 AFC Champions League (East) semi-final on Thursday.
Deprived of the services of their talismanic midfielder Andres Iniesta who was deemed only fit enough for a place on the bench after a muscle injury in the previous match, Vissel Kobe found themselves ceding possession to their opponents in the early stages of the game.
Miura praises Vissel Kobe resolve after getting past Suwon Samsung Bluewings in AFC Champions League
Doha: Vissel Kobe head coach Atsuhiro Miura commended his players for getting the job done, after they took 120 minutes and penalties to see off 10-man Suwon Samsung Bluewings in Thursday’s 2020 AFC Champions League quarter-final at Al Janoub Stadium.
Behind after seven minutes to a Park Sang-hyeok goal, Vissel’s prospects swung sharply on the 38th-minute red card to Suwon’s Kim Tae-hwan, with Kyogo Furuhashi levelling the tie from the resultant free-kick.
Despite holding a numerical advantage for more than 80 minutes, Miura’s side were unable to find a winning goal in open play, ultimately prevailing 7-6 in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw, and extending their sensational first appearance in the competition all the way to Sunday’s semi-final against Ulsan Hyundai FC of Korea Republic.
Mental shift key to Ulsan Hyundai’s AFC Champions League run, says clinical Júnior
Doha: Júnior Negrão credited a shift in mentality as a key reason for Ulsan Hyundai’s 2020 AFC Champions League success, after the Brazilian scored both goals in their quarter-final win over Beijing FC on Thursday.
Scoring two or more goals on every occasion, the Korean outfit have now won seven matches in a row since arriving in Qatar and with Júnior one of three players in the side to have compiled a personal tally of four goals in the tournament.
Thursday’s test was their biggest yet. They were up against a Beijing side who themselves hadn’t lost a match in the competition, but Ulsan emerged with their record intact, and are now just two wins away from a second AFC Champions League title.
Génésio: Lack of cutting edge cost Beijing FC AFC Champions League exit
Doha: A lack of efficiency at both ends was to blame for Beijing FC’s 2020 AFC Champions League exit against Ulsan Hyundai FC, according to head coach Bruno Génésio.
Appearing in the quarter-finals for the first time, and riding a club record seven game unbeaten in the competition, the Chinese side fell to a 2-0 defeat to the K League outfit, with both goals scored before half-time by Brazilian striker Júnior Negrão.
On a statistical level, Beijing were well and truly in the game. They had more than 60 percent of possession and 22 shots at goal to Ulsan’s seven, but Génésio was left to reflect on their inability to make it count in the most important column on the stats sheet – goals.
AFC Champions League (EAST) Toyota Player of the Week: Kim Tae-hwan
Doha: Suwon Samsung Bluewings' Kim Tae-hwan has been voted by the fans as the 2020 AFC Champions League (East) Toyota Player of the Week after an excellent display in his side's come-from-behind 3-2 Round of 16 win over Yokohama F. Marinos as the K League 1 team advanced to the quarter-finals.
The midfielder, who amassed 50 percent of the fans' votes, drilled home Suwon's equaliser with a superb strike from outside the box just before the hour mark with his first goal of the campaign, He earned an 8.0 rating from Stats Perform – the AFC's official data provider.