SIPG back on top after 5-goal romp at Tianjin Teda

Shanghai SIPG went back to the top of the Chinese Super League on 46 points after a 5-2 victory at Tianjin Teda.

Shanghai SIPG went back to the top of the Chinese Super League on 46 points after a 5-2 victory at Tianjin Teda, while previous table toppers Beijing Guo’an lost 1-0 to defending champion Guangzhou Evergrande.

The fight for the championship becomes white-hot as SIPG lead second placed Evergrande and Guo’an by one point with eight matches remaining. SIPG and Evergrande, who both have one match in hand, meet at the Shanghai Stadium tomorrow evening.

Taking on Teda in Tianjin on Friday, Vitor Pereira started with the Brazilian trio of Hulk, Oscar and Elkeson. But it was Tianjin’s Brazilian striker Johnathan who headed in the opener just four minutes into the contest. Wu Lei equalized thanks to a Elkeson assist in the 12th minute. It was the CSL top scorer’s 20th goal of the season. Wu Lei has now netted 95 goals in China’s top league, just one behind former Dalian record holder Hao Haidong, who has now retired.

Oscar’s volley in the 44th minute put SIPG ahead before the halftime break.

Hulk, Wu and Oscar stirred Tianjin’s defense on the hour mark before the captain, Hulk, completed struck to increase the lead to 3-1. Elkeson then added to SIPG’s score after a defensive mistake four minutes later.

Oscar completed his brace in the 12 minutes from time after Hulk set him up before Tianjin pulled a goal back in the 81st minute to fix the final score at 5-2.

“The players showed character today,” Pereira said after the victory. “We showed self-confidence in this match. Now a good recovery is important before we get ready for the next match.”

Shanghai Shenhua drew 1-1 with Jiangsu Suning at Hongkou Football Stadium on Saturday. Wu Jingui started the game with three Under23 players, Xu Yougang, Zhu ChenJie and Liu Ruofan.

Senegal striker Demba Ba returned from injury to partner with Fredy Guarin and Oscar Romero but skipper Giovanni Moreno was suspended.

Shenhua lost 1-5 to Suning in their first meeting of the season in Nanjing. The players were reminded to be more careful in defense by Wu before the match, but they allowed Suning to score during first half injury time when Brazilian midfielder Alex Teixeira found the back of the net with a header. Ba came to Shenhua’s rescue five minutes into the second half as the score finished lever.

In yesterday’s matches, Beijing Renhe lost 0-2 to Hebei China Fortune, while Shandong Luneng beat Guangzhou R&F 2-1.

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