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AFC Champions League wrap: Sydney, Nagoya clinch away wins

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 19 Apr 2011

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Sydney FC’s AFC Champions League campaign has a heartbeat, while Nagoya Grampus leapt to the top of Group F with an away win on Tuesday.

Visiting A-League club Sydney twice fell behind at Hongku Stadium on Tuesday, only for Brazilian striker Bruno Cazarine to make amends with a well-earned brace.

Mark Bridge then stole a much-needed three points by hitting a 91st-minute volley to ice a 3-2 win for Sydney, dragging them within a point of the Group H lead.

Sydney FC goalkeeper Liam Reddy was left fuming in the ninth minute as his team-mates were caught napping by a quickly taken free kick, resulting in a goal to Jiang Jiajun.

But Cazarine made amends in the shadows of half-time, silencing the home support with a delicate left-footed chip over Shanghai custodian Qiu Shenjiong after Nick Carle’s through ball.

The home side again took the lead, courtesy of an own goal from Scott Jamieson on 53 minutes.

But it was Cazarine to the rescue six minutes later, with the Brazilian again saving Sydney FC’s hide with a touch of pure class to lob over the onrushing Qui.

And Sydney got the decisive goal in second-half injury time, thanks to a terrible attempted clearance by Cao Yunding.

The forward got his head to substitute Kofi Danning’s cross but merely looped the ball high into the air, allowing fellow Sydney sub Dmitri Petratos to nod back for Mark Bridge.

The Sydney man made no mistake, clattering the ball inside the left post to the disbelief of the Shanghai faithful.

The win sees Sydney remain third in Group H with a five-point tally. They are one less than Suwon Bluewings and Kashima Antlers, who gave nothing away in a 1-1 draw in Japan on Tuesday.

The Bluewings lead the Antlers at the top of the table due to their superior goal difference.

Nagoya Grampus, meanwhile, replaced FC Seoul at the top of Group F with a 2-0 victory in South Korea.

Grampus’ second-straight victory of the tournament came through first-half strikes from Japanese internationals Mu Kanazaki and Kensuke Nagai.

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