AFC Champions League: Group G Matchday Six Round-up and Results

(All the goals from the Mizuho Athletics Stadium as Nagoya Grampus eased to a 3-0 victory over Australia’s Central Coast Mariners in the final round of Group G matches)

Nagoya Grampus will travel to either Australia or South Korea in the Round of 16 to play one of Adelaide United and Pohang Steelers respectively, as they successfully ended their Group G campaign by downing Central Coast Mariners 3-0 at the Mizuho Athletics Stadium.

A free-kick from Keiji Tamada and a delicate Jungo Fujimoto lob in the first period were added to by Tulio Tanaka’s header late on, but the margin of victory was not quite sufficient to finish at the top of the table. Winners Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma matched the Grampus scoreline in defeating Tianjin Teda in China, and subsequently took Group G by way of a superior goal difference.

Group G

Nagoya Grampus Small Nagoya Grampus
Tamada 19′
Fujimoto 36′
Tanaka 87′
3 Central Coast Mariners 0
Tianjin Teda 0 Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma
Bit Garam 33′
Jovancic 48′, 68′ (pen.)
3
Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 6 4 2 0 13 5 +8 10
2 Nagoya Grampus 6 4 2 0 10 4 +6 10
3 Central Coast Mariners 6 1 3 2 7 11 -4 6
4 Tianjin Teda 6 0 3 3 2 12 -10 3
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성남 일화 천마 (Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma) 1 名古屋グランパス (Nagoya Grampus) 1

(Brief highlights of Matchday Five’s AFC Champions League Group G fixture featuring South Korea’s Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma and Japan’s Nagoya Grampus)

Nagoya Grampus failed to make the most of several late opportunities to secure victory both in this match and in Group G, but they were fortunate to come away from the Tancheon Sports Complex with a draw in a game the K-League side had dominated from the outset. Grampus now face a decider at the Mizuho Athletic Stadium on 15 May, where they must avoid defeat to Australia’s Central Coast Mariners to progress to the Round of 16.

Manager Dragan Stojković made two changes to the team which slipped to a home defeat by Urawa Red Diamonds at the weekend, and his selection almost cost him dear within the opening thirty seconds, as Shohei Abe, a replacement for Takahiro Masukawa, misjudged the flight of a ball into the penalty area. The cross cleared the left-back and was collected by Yoon Bit-Garam lurking at the back post. The impressive midfielder drove the ball into the ground, forcing Seigo Narazaki into making an excellent early stop to clear for a corner.

Four minutes after Yoshizumi Ogawa had slammed a free-kick into a seven-man Chunma wall from 25 yards, with one of the few sights of goal Grampus had in the first half, and looking uncharacteristically jittery, the home side took the lead with their own set piece. Twenty yards from goal and slightly to the right of the penalty area’s arc, Han Sang-Woon guided an expertly executed left-footed shot over the wall and into the top right corner.

Grampus’s ability to build moves from the defence was frequently stifled by Chunma’s energetic, hard-working midfield and forward lines, a fluid shape changing between 4-3-3 and 4-5-1, with the attacking triumvarate of Lee Chang-Hoon, Hong Chul and Han pressing high up the pitch to prevent Tulio Tanaka and Danilson from retaining possession, Chul and Han then dropping deeper into midfield if their original shape had been circumvented. It was a tactic which worked for all but the last 15 minutes of the match when a number of Chunma players began to look fatigued, and most particularly in the opening period with Jung San waiting until stoppage time before he was required to make a save. Mu Kanazaki wasted Grampus’s only chance from open play, beating the offside trap with a perfectly timed run to control Kensuke Nagai’s cleverly lobbed pass, but ignoring the possibility of closing in on goal he instead volleyed wildly over the bar.

The second half followed a very similar pattern, and Chunma nearly extended their advantage on fifty minutes, Kim Sung-Hwan striking a rising shot which left Narazaki beaten but skimmed the crossbar on the way out for a goal kick. The half-time introduction of Keiji Tamada for Abe nearly paid off with quarter of an hour played, a mazy run from the forward finding Kanazaki in space, but the 23 year-old attacking midfielder, who was unable to reproduce his good form in the J.League in this match, could not adjust his feet to shoot and the ball was blocked out for a corner. The resulting set piece, sent deep to Tulio, allowed the centre-back to control, but a deflection took all the pace of his attempted volley and spun into the midriff of Jung San.

The equaliser when it arrived was as unexpected as it was welcome, and completely silenced a hitherto vocal crowd. Jungo Fujimoto advanced with the ball to the edge of the penalty, and passed into the path of an overlapping Yoshimizu Ogawa. His powerful first-time cross along the six yard box was heading in the direction of a waiting Nagai, but struck the chest of defender Park Jin-Po and flew beyond San.

The equaliser stirred Grampus, and they began to exert pressure on a tiring Chunma outfit, whose introduction of star forward Everton Santos was of no consequence, while Tulio began to take more advanced positions in search of the killer goal. While Grampus would have to wait until stoppage time for an opening, three would follow in quick succession, each of which could easily have been finished had Daniel once and Kensuke Nagai twice shown greater compusure. Daniel was the first to throw away a golden opportunity, a corner dropping to the defender eight yards from goal, but he blasted over the crossbar, Stojković’s frustration palpable on the sidelines as he pounded the turf with his fists.

Moments later, Nagai’s superb run saw him speed past Kim Seong-Jun, but driving into the penalty area his clipped effort evaded Jung San but also the right upright. With time dying out, Nagai then squandered perhaps the best chance of all, latching on to Fujimoto’s cross but heading straight at San when unmarked from six yards and with most of the goal gaping.

Grampus’s hopes of winning the Group were all but extinguished with the result. Seongnam travel to bottom of the table Tianjin Teda on Matchday Six and should be expected to win, the Tianjin Tigers unable to progress to the knockout stage of the tournament following their heavy defeat to Central Coast Mariners today.

Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma Nagoya Grampus
Goalscorers Min Goalscorers Min
Han Sang-Woon 12 Park Jin-Po (OG.) 72
Substitutes Min Substitutes Min
Namgung Woong

Lee Hyun-Ho

66 Shohei Abe

Keiji Tamada

46
Lee Chang-Hoon

Everton Santos

79 Mu Kanazaki

Yuki Maki

67
Yoon Bit-Garam

Kim Hyun-Woo

86 Naoshi Nakamura

Keiji Yoshimura

77
Cautions Min Cautions Min
Lee Chang-Hoon 18 Yuki Maki 85
Jung San 83
Hong Chul 88

20120502-005951.jpg

Group G

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 5 1 4 0 10 5 +5 7
2 Nagoya Grampus 5 1 4 0 7 4 +3 7
3 Central Coast Mariners 5 1 3 1 7 8 -1 6
4 Tianjin Teda 5 0 3 2 2 9 -7 3

AFC Champions League: Group G live-blog – 성남 일화 천마 (Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma) v. 名古屋グランパス (Nagoya Grampus)

0 Min: Nagoya Grampus will complete qualification for the last sixteen of the AFC Champions League with a win over South Korea’s Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma today, three points enough to seal victory of Group G, and leading to a Round of 16 game against Group E’s Runner-up at home.

Seongnam equally have their sights set on topping the group, and Héverton’s 93rd minute equaliser at the Mizuho Athletic Stadium gave them a share of the spoils as they played out a 2-2 draw on Matchday One. Their qualification for the Asian Champions League was achieved by victory in the Korean FA Cup, an indifferent 2011 K-League season ending with Chunma in tenth place, and their campaign in 2012 has been equally inconsistent to date, 13 points from 10 games ensuring they sit in the same league position. However, they have fared supremely well in the Asian Champions League at home, undefeated in the competition since 2004 at the Tancheon Sports Complex.

Kick-off in this crucial fixture is scheduled for 11:30 BST/19:30 JST, and I will be bringing you all the team news shortly.

0 Min: Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma – Jung San; Sasa Ognenovski, Park Jin-Po, Hong Chul, Namgung Woong; Lim Jong-Eun, Kim Seong-Jun, Yoon Bit-Garam, Kim Sung-Hwan; Han Sang-Woon, Lee Chang-Hoon

Substitutes – Ha Kang-Jin; Yun Young-Sun; Kim Pyung-Rae; Everton Santos, Lee Hyun-Ho, Jeon Hyeon-Chul, Kim Hyun-Woo

0 Min: Nagoya Grampus – Narazaki; Tulio Tanaka, Shohei Abe, Daniel, Hayuma Tanaka; Naoshi Nakamura, Jungo Fujimoto, Yoshizumi Ogawa, Danilson, Kanazaki; Nagai

Substitutes – Takagi; Masukawa, Ishibitsu; Isomura, Yoshimura; Tamada, Maki

0 Min: A clear evening at the Tancheon Sports Complex, and referee Ali Hamad Albadwawi gets us underway.

1 Min: Yoon Bit-Garam nearly opens the scoring for the home side within 30 seconds. A cross from the left clears Shohei Abe at the back post, and Bit-Garam fires his shot into the ground, Narazaki’s excellent save low to his left forcing the ball over the bar. The resulting corner nearly falls to Han Sang-Woon inside the six yard area, Daniel’s acrobatic overhead kick clearing to outside the penalty box. Almost the worst possible start for Grampus.

6 Mins: A jittery start from the Nagoya side, Chunma settling into a passing rhythm early on. However, Ognenovski trips Yoshizumi Ogawa 25 yards from the goal, and Grampus have an excellent opportunity to test Jung San in the Chunma goal.

8 Mins: Daniel, Nagai and Kanazaki are all standing in front of the seven man Chunma wall, Ogawa directing where they should position themselves. It all goes to waste, however, as he slams his set piece into the defenders.

10 Mins: Ten minutes played, it’s Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 0 Nagoya Grampus 0.

11 Mins: A free-kick for Chunma twenty yards and slightly to the right, Grampus with a five man wall.

12 Mins: GOAL! Han Sang-Woon lifts the ball over the wall and into the top right corner. An expertly executed free-kick gives the home side the lead. They have been much the better side so far.

12 Mins: Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 1 Nagoya Grampus 0

14 Mins: Grampus nearly strike back immediately. Mu Kanazaki’s cross is delivered to a very dangerous area, but no Nagoya player can connect.

19 Mins: Daniel attempts a strike from distance after skipping past Kim Seong-Jun, but under pressure from Yoon Bit-Garam he can only skew his shot wide of Jung San’s right upright.

24 Mins: A spirited run from Hong Chul down the left wing causes Tulio trouble, and his crossfield pass into the penalty area reaches Han Sang-Woon. Narazaki is off his line quickly, however, and he blocks the ball away.

26 Mins: Nagoya are struggling to create any opportunities, Chunma’s fluid formation switching between a 4-5-1 and 4-3-3. They are dominating in midfield, and Jungo Fujimoto, with few attacking options available to him, sends an aimless shot wide of Jung San’s goal. Danilson in particular has been absent, and Kensuke Nagai is completely isolated in attack.

28 Mins: Mu Kanazaki beats the Chunma offside trap, but with time to control and close in on goal, he volleys wildly over the bar across the angle. A potentially precious chance wasted.

30 Mins: Nagai has his first chance of the match, Kanazaki deftly flicked a pass over the Chunma defence to the forward, but he’s ruled narrowly offside as he sends his shot just over Jung San’s crossbar.

34 Mins: A period of pressure for Grampus gives them their first corner, to be taken by Yoshizumi Ogawa from the right.

35 Mins: Ogawa’s corner is met by Danilson, but his header is turned away from the post for another corner.

35 Mins: Ogawa to take the second corner from the same position. It’s low to the near post, and easily cleared by Kim Sung-Hwan.

38 Mins: Kim Seong-Jun is pulled down on the edge of the 18-yard box by Naoshi Nakamura, and as it’s slightly to the left of the ‘D’, Lee Chang-Hoon will look to curl a shot right-footed.

39 Mins: Lee’s shot clears the wall, but this time it’s off-target as it drifts harmlessly wide of Narazaki’s right post.

40 Mins: Five minutes remaining in a forgettable first period for Nagoya Grampus, it’s Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 1 Nagoya Grampus 0.

45 Mins: There will be one minute of added time, and Shohei Abe forces Jung San to make his first save of the game with Grampus’s first shot on target, albeit from the left touchline which drifts towards goal and the Seongnam keeper saves easily.

45 Mins+1: Referee Albadwawi draws the first half to a close.

HT: A difficult first period for Dragan Stojković’s men, who have been outwitted in midfield by the invention and the fluid formation of Chunma. Several options are available to the Grampus manager, not the least of which is Keiji Tamada who may play some part, potentially to support Kensuke Nagai upfront.

45 Mins: Action recommences, and Keiji Tamada has indeed come on, as he replaces Shohei Abe. A slight tactical and positional adjustment will be required for Grampus.

46 Mins: Naoshi Nakamura and Kim Sung-Hwan both feeling the after-effects of a crunching challenge in midfield.

50 Mins: Kim Sung-Hwan’s rising shot from outside the penalty area has Narazaki beaten as it skims the top of the crossbar.

52 Mins: Jungo Fujimoto delivers a set piece to the back post, but captain Sasa Ognenovski is on hand to head up in the air, presenting goalkeeper Jung San with an easy catch.

55 Mins: Right-back Park Jin-Po gathers a pass and unleashes a strike from 25 yards. He’s leaning back and it doesn’t trouble Narazaki.

60 Mins: A mazy run inside the penalty area from Keiji Tamada is laid off to Mu Kanazaki, who earns a corner for Grampus.

60 Mins: The corner is deep and controlled on his chest by Tulio, but a deflection takes all the pace off his volley, and it’s into the midriff of Jung San.

62 Mins: Referee Albadwawi has shown welcome restraint so far, not reaching into his pocket to show any cards thus far.

64 Mins: A change due for Chunma, Lee Hyun-Ho readying himself on the sidelines.

65 Mins: Danilson tries from distance, but his left-footed shot from 30 yards is some way off target.

65 Mins: Namgung Woong’s match is over, and Lee Hyun-Ho enters the field of play.

67 Mins: Tulio Tanaka concedes a corner under pressure from Hyun-Ho, and it will be taken by Han Sang-Woon, but not before Yuki Maki comes on to the pitch replacing Mu Kanazaki.

67 Mins: The corner is poor, along the ground and cleared from danger.

71 Mins: Grampus have found no solution to Chunma’s three attacking players pressing high up the pitch, of whom the wide players then quickly shut down both left and right channels.

72 Mins: GOAL! The home support is completely silenced. A short pass from Jungo Fujimoto releases Yoshizumi Ogawa on the right of the penalty area, and his dangerous cross is diverted off the chest of Chunma’s Park Jin-Po for an own goal.

72 Mins: Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 1 Nagoya Grampus 1

74 Mins: A goal which on the balance of play is undeserved, but with the discrepancy in goal difference between the two teams, Grampus still need to find another goal and win this contest outright if they want to win Group G.

76 Mins:Keiji Yoshimura now on for Naoshi Nakamura.

78 Mins: Seongnam’s star forward Everton Santos has come on for Lee Chang-Hoon.

80 Mins: Fujimoto holds the ball up superbly on the Grampus right, and sends Ogawa free. Ogawa’s first touch is much too strong, however, and it runs for a goal-kick.

82 Mins: Kensuke Nagai gathers a throughball and Jung San rushes off his line, bringing the forward down outside the penalty area. San escapes being sent off, Albadwawi brandishing a yellow card instead, and with two covering defenders it may just have been the correct decision.

83 Mins: Keiji Tamada takes responsibility for the free-kick this time, but it’s off the top of the wall for a corner.

84 Mins: Tulio Tanaka is penalised for a push in the penalty area, and Seongnam clear the ball downfield. Yuki Maki then picks up a caution for a high challenge.

86 Mins: A further change for Chunma, as the impressive Yoon Bit-Garam makes way.

88 Mins: Left-winger Hong Chul is booked for a cynical trip on Danilson.

89 Mins: Grampus are finishing this match more strongly. The free-kick is delivered to the back post, Danilson heading on to Tulio, who lays off to Fujimoto. His cross is diverted behind for a corner.

89 Mins: Daniel misses a great chance to win this match for Grampus. Seongnam are unable to deal with the the set piece, and it drops to the defender eight yards from goal. He volleys over the crossbar and Dragan Stojković pounds the ground in frustration.

90 Mins: Three minutes of added time to play.

91 Mins: Nagai this time has the opportunity to give Grampus the three points. He speeds past Kim Seong-Jun on the right-wing, and driving into the penalty area, he clips the ball over Jung San but the wrong side of the Sun’s left post.

92 Mins: Nagai then nearly turns provider, a weaving run on the left followed by a pull back which is just behind Tulio and he can’t crane his neck back far enough to niod towards goal.

93 Mins: A third attack for Grampus and another simple opportunity goes begging. Nagai wastes a free header after a cross from Fujimoto, which he can only direct at Jung San with most of the goal at his mercy.

93 Mins: Albadwawi stops a Grampus attack in its tracks as the final whistle blows.

FT: Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 1 Nagoya Grampus 1

FT: Nagoya Grampus nearly stole a victory from a match in which they had largely been second best. Three simple opportunities to take all three points were wasted, and with it the chance to top Group G is almost certainly lost based on the respective goal difference of the two teams. Further complicating matters is the 5-1 victory for Central Coast Mariners against Tianjin Teda, and Grampus must avoid defeat at the Mizuho Athletic Stadium n 15 May by the New South Wales outfit to proceed to the next round.

FT: Thank you for joining me. A full match report will follow later today.

AFC Champions League: Group G Matchday Four Table

(Nagoya Grampus and Tianjin Teda leave with honours even after a 0-0 draw in their Group G AFC Champions League fixture on 18 April. Keiji Tamada squandered a 59th minute penalty for the hosts, but the other result in the group ensures that the Nagoya outfit still stand an excellent chance of qualifying for the latter stages of the competition)

Group G

Position Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma 4 1 3 0 9 4 +5 6
2 Nagoya Grampus 4 1 3 0 6 3 +3 6
3 Tianjin Teda 4 0 3 1 1 4 -3 3
4 Central Coast Mariners 4 0 3 1 2 7 -5 3

AFC Champions League: Group G Matchday Four Round-up and Result

Nagoya Grampus sit in second place in Group G after playing out a scoreless draw with China’s Tianjin Teda on 18 April in the AFC Champions League, while Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma took full advantage of the result, thumping Australia’s Central Coast Mariners 5-0 in South Korea to top the table on goal difference.

Grampus will be counting the cost of Keiji Tamada’s missed penalty in the 59th minute, a baffling decision granted by referee Liu Kwok Man after he judged Yuki Maki had been pulled down by Nie Tao just outside the six-yard box, with no Nagoya players appealing for an infringement. Justice of sorts was served when Tamada fired high and wide of the left upright, a dreadful spot kick befitting the dreadful refereeing.

Clear goalscoring chances were otherwise few and far between, the first half witnessing a Yoshizumi Ozawa free-kick from 25 yards which beat the Tianjin Tigers wall but was two weak to trouble Yang Qipeng in the Teda goal, and a Veliche Shumulikoski volley which looped over a number of defenders before striking the top of the crossbar and bouncing away for a goal kick. Teda did have an excellent opportunity to take the lead in the second period, but He Hang mishit a shot from 12 yards after an excellent pull back from Milan Susak, and the ball dribbled into the grateful arms of Seigo Narazaki.

Grampus now face their most difficult tie in Group G, travelling to Seongnam to face the group leaders on 1 May. A victory over their rivals will guarantee their progress to the Round of 16 should Central Coast Mariners fail to defeat Tianjin Teda, but it is most likely that the Nagoya outfit will need to secure a berth in the knockout format when the host the Australian side at the Mizuho Athletic Stadium on 15 May.

Group F

Nagoya Grampus 0 Tianjin Teda 0

AFC Champions League: Matchday Three Tables

(All the goals from Gamba Osaka versus Bunyodkor in the AFC Champions League Group E match played 3 April 2012. Gamba ran out 3-1 winners in their first victory of the season in all competitions)

Group E

Position Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Pohang Steelers 3 2 0 1 4 2 +2 6
2 Adelaide United 3 2 0 1 4 2 +2 6
3 Gamba Osaka 3 1 0 2 3 6 -3 3
4 Bunyodkor 3 1 0 2 4 5 -1 3

Group G

Position Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Nagoya Grampus 3 1 2 0 6 3 +3 5
2 Seongnam Il. Ch. 3 0 3 0 4 4 +0 3
3 C. Coast Mariners 3 0 3 0 2 2 +0 3
4 Tianjin Teda 3 0 2 1 1 4 -3 2

AFC Champions League: Matchday Three Round-up and Results

Rafinha (9) is saluted by teammates Hisato Sato (20) and Shinichi Terada (13, Obscured) after scoring the first of his two penalties in Gamba Osaka's 3-1 AFC Champions League victory over Uzbekistan's Bunyodkor on 3 April. This was Gamba's first win of the season in any competition, and leaves the team in third place in Group E with three matches remaining (Image courtesy AFP)

The first victory of an otherwise miserable season for Gamba Osaka was obtained in wet and windy conditions at the Osaka Expo ’70 Stadium, a 3-1 victory for the home side putting Gamba third in Group E at the halfway stage of the 2012 AFC Champions League group stage. A stunning strike from Yasuhito Endo inside the first quarter of an hour gave Gamba Osaka the lead, and it was one they would further extend with two Rafinha goals in the second half, Anvarjon Soliev pulling one back for the visitors with less than a minute to play. Endo, the 32 year-old midfielder, intercepted a misdirected Anvar Gafurov pass on the Bunyodkor right, and playing a one-two with Rafinha on the edge of the penalty area he placed an exquisite curling shot from 22 yards past Ignatiy Nesterov’s dive into the bottom left-hand corner.

Manager Masanobu Matsunami had made clear in the pre-match build-up that he was seeking all three points available from this tie, and Rafinha gave Gamba a well-deserved cushion with the first of his two spot kicks on 58 minutes. Rafinha attempted to lob a pass for Shu Karata, and Hayrulla Karimov evidently handled leaving referee Chaiya Mahapab no choice but to signal for a penalty. Rafinha calmly stroked home, sending the ball into the bottom right with Nesterov diving the wrong way.

On 82 minutes substitute Hayato Sasaki made a driving run into Bunyodkor’s penalty area. Salomov Shavkat stepped in to win the first challenge, but Akihiro Sato ran on to collect the loose ball and Shavkat’s outstretched leg was enough to send Sato tumbling. Rafinha looked to put the fixture beyond doubt, but this time Nesterov predicted correctly, diving to his right to make an excellent save. However, the referee ordered the penalty to be re-taken after spotting encroachment from Bunyodkor players, and this time Rafhina made no mistake, blasting his shot down the middle of the goal.

There was just time for Bunyodkor to reduce the deficit, a long pass from near halfway by Victor Karpenko flicked into an empty net by Anvarjon Soliev, beating Gamba goalkeeper Yosuke Fujigaya to the ball after he had unwisely chosen to attempt a punch.

Matsunami was inevitably pleased with the performance, saying:

I am happy with my first win as manager, and this was brought by a team effort.

“This victory gives us three points, which means a lot to us as our group is pretty even and competitive.

“We will play away in Uzbekistan next and that could be a tough game for us. But we won’t rest on this victory but make a step forward to play well in the AFC Champions League and the J.League.

Group E

Gamba Osaka
Endo 14′
Rafinha 58′ (pen.)
Rafinha 82′ (pen.)
3 Bunyodkor
Soliev 8”
1

Nagoya Grampus moved to the top of Group G with an emphatic 3-0 win away to China’s Tianjin Teda. Grampus nearly took the lead in the opening minutes of the match, Danilson spotting an excellent run from Keiji Tamada, who took one touch before slamming his shot against the crossbar with goalkeeper Song Zhenyu well beaten. The Nagoya giants only had to wait until midway through the first period to make their mark, however, midfielder Jungo Fujimoto receiving a quick pass on the left-hand side of the penalty area, and dummying defender Li Weifeng, proceeded to place a delightful chip into the bottom right corner of the goal past a hastily backtracking but stranded Zhenyu.

Teda did find the net in the first half, Wang Xinxin collecting a ball to the right of the Grampus 18-yard box before drawing inside and shooting left-footed. Mao Biao controlled and dispatched a shot beyond Seigo Narazaki, but was correctly flagged offside and the goal was disallowed.

Four minutes after the restart Keiji Tamada scored the second for Grampus with another excellent finish. Danilson played a pass out to the right wing for Mu Kanazaki, who crossed to Tamada. The 31 year-old controlled on his chest before volleying expertly with his left foot into the right corner past a stunned Zhenyu.

With 17 minutes left Kensuke Nagai wrapped up proceedings for the visitors. Teda were visibly tiring, and Nagai collected a throughball just outside the penalty area, before slotting a low finish into the bottom left corner. Grampus are two points clear with three matches remaining, and will take some comfort knowing that two games are to be played at the Mizuho Athletic Stadium.

Group G

Tianjin Teda
0 Nagoya Grampus
Fujimoto 24′
Tamada 49′
Nagai 73′
3

(Matches played 3 April 2012. FC Tokyo and Kashiwa Reysol play their respective Group F and H games on 4 April 2012)