Riascos saves Shanghai, Hangzhou win
Colombian forward Duvier Riascos scored a last-minute winner to hand Shanghai Shenhua a hard-fought 1-0 over Shandong Luneng in the Chinese Super League today.
The valuable three points boosted Shanghai's confidence in contending for the domestic title despite their woeful performance in the AFC Champions League.
Riascos beat Shandong's offside trap before volleying past goalkeeper Yang Cheng one minute before the end of the game to complete the hosts' three-game winning streak.
It was the visitors who created the first effort of note after just two minutes, when Lu Zheng blasted a long-range effort over the crossbar.
Riascos came close to a goal after 32 minutes, latching onto compatriot Juan Camilo Angulo's header before clipping the ball just off the post.
Li Wei thought he put the visitors ahead nine minutes into the second period, completing a one-two with Wang Yongpo, only to see goalkeeper Wang Dalei stretch out to palm his drive away.
Four minutes after the hour mark, Jiang Kun had only the goalkeeper to beat after receiving a smart pass by Riascos. But Cui Peng made a dash to keep Jiang at bay with a last-gasp intervention.
With time running out, it seemed the two sides would have to share the points. However, Riascos grasped a golden chance when he was found clear by Facundo Perez Castro, collecting the long cross before firing a volley past Yang.
"I thought we could gain a point in the tightly-contested match," said Shandong coach Branko Ivankovic. "Unfortunately, we conceded a last-minute goal. But I believe we will play better in the coming games."
Two first-half strikes by Fan Xiaodong and Honduran Luis Ramirez ensured Hangzhou won all three points in their 2-1 win over Shenzhen Kingway.
Jiang Bo scored a consolation goal for Shenzhen 17 minutes before the final whistle, but it was not enough to earn them a point.
In the day's other games, Tiajin Teda lost to Chengdu Blades 1-0 and Guangzhou Evergrande got the better of Liaoning Zhongyu 2-1.