Guangzhou Evergrande, Shanghai SIPG Set Domestic Quarterfinal Clash In AFC Champions League
Two-time winners Guangzhou Evergrande will come up against domestic rivals Shanghai SIPG in the AFC Champions league quarterfinals.
The drawing ceremony in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday saw two domestic clashes between two Chinese and two Japanese clubs.
Guangzhou, who edged out Kashima Antlers on away goal advantage in the round of 16, encountered the most dangerous attacking line across the Asia.
Shanghai SIPG overcame Jiangsu FC 5-3 in the round of 16, have been showing their tremendous domination in their opponent half this season. Hulk, Oscar and Elkeson combined for 10 goals in the Champions League. The Brazilian trio could be the biggest threat to the 2013 and 2015 Champions.
The Chinese champions, however, have a huge advantage in their head-to-head encounters. They recorded two wins and three draws in their last five meetings with Shanghai.
“The competition level of Chinese super league has been dramatically improved in recent years,” said an official from Guangzhou Evergrande club.
“I think most of the Chinese fans prefer to see two Chinese teams meet in the semifinals, but it is a pity only one could make it,” he added.
The winning Chinese team will come up against Kawasaki Frontale or Urawa Red Diamonds from Japan.
In the West Asia region, 2016 runners-up Al Ain will meet Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal, while Iran’s Persepolis set to challenge 2012 runners-up Al Ahli from Saudi Arabia.