Dalian, Sep 13 (IANS) Guangzhou Evergrande coach Fabio Cannavaro marked his 47-year-old birthday with a victory as the defending champions of the Chinese Super League beat Shandong Luneng 2-1 here on Sunday.
Luneng were on a three-game winless run before Sunday’s game while Evergrande dominated Group A, despite losing to Luneng 1-0 in the first leg, their only defeat this season, reports Xinhua news agency.
Luneng’s goalkeeper Wang Dalei made his debut this season after coming back from an injury while Evergrande’s veteran Zheng Zhi also started in the middle of the park.
Evergrande had a good opportunity just four minutes into the game but Ai Kesen hit chance off target.
Luneng were dealt a blow in the 20th minute as Marouane Fellaini picked up an injury, making way for Roger Guedes.Evergrande broke the deadlock in the 40th minute with a moment of magic, as Paulinho dribbled past several defenders at the edge of the box, unleashing a rocket that went beyond an out-stretched Wang.
Evergrande doubled the lead in the 69th minute with a stunning free kick from Ai, two minutes after his tap-in was ruled out due to off-side.