Aug 17 (Reuters) - Chinese champions Guangzhou Evergrande extended their lead at the top of the Super League table to 10 points after a dramatic 93rd minute goal by midfielder Liu Jian gave them a 2-1 home win over Tianjin Teda.
Liu just beat the offside trap to cleverly divert Gao Lin’s acrobatic overhead kick into the net to give Marcello Lippi’s big spending team a third consecutive league win and open up a sizeable gap on Beijing Guoan with eight games left.
The Beijing side do have two games in hand, though, and host fifth-placed Guizhou Renhe on Monday looking to get back to winning ways after a 3-1 loss on Wednesday to Sven-Goran Eriksson’s Guangzhou R&F, who are third, a further four points back.
But they face a tough task to overhaul Evergrande, who are looking for a fourth consecutive league title and keep churning out the wins at the business end of the campaign.
They had fallen behind in the 56th minute when former Colombia striker Carmelo Valencia headed the visitors into a surprise lead after peeling away from his marker at the back post but the hosts were quickly level.
Italian Alessandro Diamanti took a quick corner and whipped in a left foot cross which was poked home by striker Yu Hanchao at the far post two minutes later before Liu’s late winner grabbed all three points.
Evergande will now travel to Australia for the first leg of their Asian Champions League quarter-final against Western Sydney Wanderers on Wednesday as they look to successfully defend their continental crown. (Reporting by Patrick Johnston; Editing by Greg Stutchbury)