Chinese Super League 2017: Guangzhou Evergrande vs Guangzhou R&F, Preview, Prediction & Predicted Lineup
A cross-city derby between defending champions Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao FC (2-1-0, 6 points) and Guangzhou R&F FC (3-0-0, 9 points) is set to take place at the Tianhe Stadium on April 8, Saturday as the 2017 Chinese Super League season continues.
Guangzhou Evergrande, winners of the last six China top-flight titles, had a rocky start to their title-defense campaign this season after a stunning 1-2 loss to Shandong Luneng in the second round of competitions.
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The Southern China Tigers was able to bounce back in the third round by pulling off a tough 3-2 win over Shanghai SIPG also at the Tianhe Stadium last Saturday, as per ESPN.
In a star-studded affair featuring the likes of Paulinho, Alan Carvalho, and Ricardo Goulart for Evergrande and Hulk, Oscar, and Elkeson for SIPG, head coach Luiz Felipe Scolari's side managed to outscore their championship rivals with a penalty kick by Goulart in the 80th minute.
Evergrande's Yu Hanchao and Alan scored the first two goals of the match in the 12th and 24th minutes before Elkeson and Hulk netted one each in the 53rd and 70th to equalize it.
Meanwhile, the other Guangzhou club, R&F, kept their unbeaten streak going by nipping Yanbian Funde, 1-0, on the road at the Yanji Nationwide Fitness Centre Stadium also last Saturday, the South China Morning Post reported.
It was the third straight win for head coach Dragan Stojkovic's side, keeping their record perfect after three rounds.
Israeli striker Eran Zahavi scored the winning goal of the match in the 74th minute off an assist by local midfielder Tang Miao as the squad overcame a tough defensive effort from Yanbian.
R&F is currently at second place in the overall standings. They are tied on points with league leaders Shandong Luneng but has a lower goal differential to settle for second.
The predicted result is another high-scoring 3-2 victory for Guangzhou Evergrande.
Guangzhou Evergrande starting lineup (4-2-3-1 formation): Zeng; Zhang, Mei, Feng, Li; Xu, Paulinho; Yu, Goulart, Zheng; Alan
Guangzhou R&F starting lineup (5-3-2 formation): Cheng; Tang, Jiang, Huang, Yi, Zhang; Renatinho, Urso, Chen; Xiao, Zahavi