Sports Mole previews Wednesday’s Chinese Super League clash between Shanghai Port and Guangzhou, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Shanghai Port will be looking to clinch consecutive victories when they play host to Guangzhou on Wednesday.
While their hosts occupy 12th place, Guangzhou sit rock bottom of the Chinese Super League after losing their opening three matches.
Shanghai Port experienced a couple of disappointing results to begin their campaign, losing to Wuhan FC and Shanghai Shenhua.
As well as falling to consecutive defeats Shanghai Port were unable to find the net in their opening two matches, but they offered a positive response in their latest outing against Hebei.
Zhang Linpeng opened the scoring in the fifth minute and the lead remained at one until the 80th minute when Cherif Ndiaye netted his first goal for the Red Eagles to wrap up the three points.
After claiming their first win of the season, Wednesday hosts will be desperate to clinch their first home win of the campaign.
Ivan Leko‘s side will be looking to take inspiration from the narrow 1-0 victory they picked up against Guangzhou in the most recent meeting between the two teams in January.
In contrast to their hosts, Guangzhou are yet to win a game this season after losing their opening three league matches.
They began the campaign with a narrow 1-0 defeat to Shanghai Shenhua before they were thrashed 6-0 by Wuhan Three Towns in their first away match.
Another defeat followed on Saturday, as an 81st-minute strike from Li Peng extended Guangzhou’s poor run of form, with their current 10-game losing run including a forgettable AFC Champions League campaign.
After failing to score in all 10 of those defeats, Guangzhou will be pessimistic about their chances of achieving a positive result on Wednesday, especially as they have also failed to score in their last two meetings with Shanghai Port.
Shanghai Port Chinese Super League form:
Shanghai Port form (all competitions):
Guangzhou Chinese Super League form:
Guangzhou form (all competitions):
Shanghai Port are expected to name the same back three for the fourth consecutive game with Zhang Linpeng, Wang Shenchao and Li Ang set to continue in the backline.
Meanwhile, Fu Huan will retain his place at right wing-back after starting the last two matches.
The hosts could make a change in the frontline, with Liu Zhurun set to return to the starting lineup in place of Liu Baiyang.
As for the visitors, Tyias Browning has started the last two matches, and the 28-year-old is expected to continue his centre-back partnership with Li Yang.
Zheng Shengxiong dropped out of the starting lineup for the defeat to Wuhan, but the midfielder is expected to return to the side for Wednesday’s contest.
Hou Yu could also return to the starting XI after spending the duration of Saturday’s encounter on the bench.
Shanghai Port possible starting lineup:
Yan; L. Zhang, A. Li, Wang; Fu, Muzepper, Yang, W. Lu; Feng, Z. Liu, Paulinho
Guangzhou possible starting lineup:
Liu; R. Chen, Browning, Y. Li, Wan; Yu, Yan, Zheng; L. Yang, Sh. Wei, Ling
We say: Shanghai Port 2-1 Guangzhou
Shanghai Port will have taken encourgament from their first victory off the season, whereas the visitors are currently bereft of confidence after losing their opening three matches, and we think Guangzhou’s woes will continue on Wednesday, although it could be a close-fought contest.
For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.