Aussies win, snuffing out Bluewings’ AFC hopesThe K-League Classic runner-up Suwon Bluewings were shown the door in the first stage of the Asian Football Confederation Champions League after a 1-0 loss to the Central Coast Mariners of Australia in Suwon, Gyeonggi, on Tuesday.
Substitute Michael McGlinchey scored the winner in the 80th minute at the Suwon World Cup Stadium, lifting the visitors to the runner-up in Group H.
The Bluewings, who had three draws without a win, are four points behind the Mariners with only one game left. The two best teams from each group get a berth to the Round of 16.
“The result is disappointing for us,” Suwon coach Seo Jung-won said after the loss, according to the AFC Web site. “We have been weak in the AFC Champions League this season and we tried to fix it, but we lost again.”
Suwon, which is now sitting two points behind the K-League Classic leader Pohang Steelers, scored only two goals in the 2013 ACL.
Kashiwa Reysol confirmed a top finish in the group with a 1-1 draw with Guizhou Renhe of China on Tuesday, which put the Japanese club in a comfortable four-point lead. Renhe, trailing the Mariners by two points, will host the Bluewings ?on Tuesday.
The Steelers are also at risk of a first-stage knock-out after suffering a 2-0 loss to China’s Beijing Guoan in Beijing on Wednesday.
The 2012 K-League FA Cup winner is in third place in Group G with six points, trailing runner-up Beijing by two points. It will be eliminated automatically if the Chinese side beats the already eliminated Sanfrecce Hiroshima ?on Tuesday. The Steelers will try their luck when they host the group leader, Bunyodkor of Uzbekistan, ?on Tuesday.
Joffre Davis Guerron Mendez put the hosts on the scoreboard in the 47th minute at the Beijing Workers Stadium and Shao Jiayi added another in the 87th minute.
“We still have one more game to go, and we will try our best,” the Steelers coach Hwang Sun-hong said.
By Moon Gwang-lip [firstname.lastname@example.org]