HONG KONG (Reuters) - Two Diego Tardelli goals in the final 10 minutes earned Shandong Luneng a 3-2 win over Henan Jianye in the Chinese Super League on Sunday but the victory did not spare the players the wrath of German head coach Felix Magath.
Shandong moved up to fourth place with the win and they trail leaders Guangzhou Evergrande by eight points but with a game in hand over the six-time champions.
Henan, who occupy one of the two places in the league’s relegation zone, looked set to pick up just their second win of the season when Zhong Jinbao and Ke Zhao gave the club from Zhengzhou the lead after Wu Xinghan had opened the scoring in the third minute for Shandong.
Tardelli’s close-range flick levelled the scores in the 80th minute, however, before a low shot from outside the area by the Brazilian gave his side all three points with barely a minute of normal time remaining.
Magath was not happy with his team’s performance though.
“We scored at a very early stage, even our players were shocked at how fast the goal was,” said the former Wolfsburg and Bayern Munich coach.
“They might have had the feeling that they were going to win, so they easily handed over control to our opponents. Henan haven’t been a team with strong attacking power but they scored two goals at our home stadium. It is unacceptable. I can’t be satisfied with this.”
Guangzhou Evergrande notched up their seventh straight league win to remain two points clear at the top with a 2-0 victory over Chongqing Lifan on Friday despite Luiz Felipe Scolari fielding a weakened side ahead of his club’s Asian Champions League clash with Japan’s Kashima Antlers on Tuesday.
Shanghai SIPG kept pace in second place with a 5-1 thrashing of Beijing Guoan on Saturday in which Wei Shihao and Wu Lei both scored a brace either side of Hulk’s sixth league goal this season.
“We should have had more opportunities and the scoreline could have been even higher,” said SIPG assistant coach Daniel Sousa, who led the team with Andre Villas-Boas suspended after a late sending-off in last week’s win over Shanghai Shenhua.
“The players had an outstanding performance. We didn’t communicate with Andre during the match. We had fully prepared for all possible outcomes and the players understood well and executed well.”
Hebei CFFC picked up their fourth win in five games to move up to third with a 2-1 victory over Changchun Yatai that came courtesy of Zhang Chendong’s 94th-minute winner while Guangzhou R&F went a fifth game without a win when they were held to a 0-0 draw by a Shanghai Shenhua side that welcomed back Carlos Tevez from injury.
Gregorio Manzano maintained his unbeaten run since returning to Chinese football earlier this month with Guizhou Zhicheng who were held to a 2-2 draw by Jiangsu Suning. The point moved Jiangsu off the bottom of the standings.
Fabio Cannavaro’s Tianjin Quanjian notched up a 3-0 win over local rivals Tianjin Teda as Yanbian Funde ended the weekend propping up the standings with just seven points from their first 11 games after losing 3-1 to Liaoning Whowin.
Editing by Clare Fallon