Zhejiang narrowly wins and retains promotion in the AFC Champions League, while Wuhan suffers a defeat and is eliminated early
In the fifth round of the 2023-2024 AFC Champions League group stage on the 29th, the Zhejiang team narrowly defeated the Thai team Buriram United 3:2 at home to retain their hope of qualifying, while the Wuhan Three Towns lost to Urawa Red Diamonds away from home, resulting in their elimination one round early.
Before this round of games, the Zhejiang team was ranked bottom in Group H. Against the third-ranked Buriram United, the Zhejiang team could only continue its hope of promotion by scoring all three points. However, in the first half of the game, it was the away team from Thailand that was the first to break the deadlock. In the eighth minute, Buriram United made a pass from the wing. The Zhejiang team defender grabbed the first shot and made a clearance without kicking the ball far. Vukic easily volleyed the ball after receiving the header from his teammate to help the visiting team 1: 0 takes the lead. In the 27th minute, Li Tixiang stole the ball and sent a wonderful pass. Leonardo, who followed up from behind, scored with a volley and the Zhejiang team evened the score.
After changing sides, Zhejiang team took the initiative on the court. Frank’s goal in the 77th minute helped Zhejiang team lead the score 2:1. In the 83rd minute, Posinoro volleyed to help Zhejiang team gain another victory. Buriram United got a goal back in the 87th minute but it was of no avail. In the end, the Zhejiang team got a precious three points at home.
After five rounds of games, Zhejiang team and Buriram United have 6 points, Melbourne City and Kofu Fenglin have 8 points. With one round left in the group stage, all four teams have the possibility of advancing.
In the Group J Wuhan Three Towns away game against the defending champion Urawa Red Diamonds, Scholz’s penalty kick helped the home team take the lead, and Davidson’s goal in the 68th minute helped the Wuhan team equalize. Before the end, Jose Kanter scored with a volley from near the penalty area. In the end, Urawa Red Diamonds narrowly won 2:1.
After five rounds of games, the Wuhan team has accumulated 4 points and is 3 points behind the second-ranked Urawa Red Diamonds with one round left in the group stage. Due to the disadvantage in the outcome, the Wuhan team has been eliminated early.