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Japanese raiders can earn draw in trip to Guangzhou

Guangzhou Evergrande's Paulinho (centre) in AFC Champions League action against Urawa Red Diamonds
1 of 1

AFC Champions League
1pm Tuesday


Twice champions Guangzhou Evergrande are 8-13 to beat Japanese side Kashima Antlers in the first knockout round of the Asian Champions League.

Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Chinese powerhouses could only finish as runners-up in Group G, hence having to play the first leg of this last-16 shootout on home soil at Tianhe Stadium.

They were, however, unbeaten in their group campaign with four draws to go alongside home-and-away hammerings of Hong Kong outfit Eastern.

Two of those stalemates – against Kawasaki Frontale and Suwon Bluewings – were at home and the draw might well be worth a punt in this match.

The Chinese Super League leaders, driven on by ex-Spurs midfielder Paulinho and with former Cruzeiro frontman Ricardo Goulart in the goals, are in sparkling form.

And Kashima Antlers are going through a sticky spell with back-to-back defeats in the J-League sending them tumbling to sixth spot.

Masatada Ishii’s reigning J-League champions do travel well, however. They have won six of their last seven road trips, including a stunning 4-0 romp at Korean side Ulsan earlier in the competition and a domestic 1-0 win at Urawa Reds, knocking them off the top of the table.

The Group E winners haven’t failed to find the net in any of their last 20 away matches and even allowing for Guangzhou’s pedigree – they’ve won six Chinese league titles on the bounce – the Japanese raiders will be confident of taking a positive result back to Kashima Soccer Stadium next Tuesday.

Recommendation
Draw

1pt 3-1 bet365, Betway

Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Chinese powerhouses could only finish runners-up in Group G, hence having to play the first leg of this last-16 shootout at home
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