Soccer-Patric scores twice as Gamba bounce back to hold Jeonbuk

·2-min read

By Michael Church

(Reuters) - Brazilian striker Patric claimed a brace as Gamba Osaka came back from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Jeonbuk Motors in a battle of former Asian Champions League winners in Tashkent on Monday.

Stanislav Iljutcenko put Jeonbuk in front in the Group H clash inside the first two minutes and Takahiro Kunimoto doubled the South Korean side's lead 15 minutes later when his deflected effort from distance beat goalkeeper Masaaki Higashiguchi.

But two goals in four minutes from Patric pulled Gamba level as the Brazilian halved the deficit with a 27th-minute header before equalising from close range soon after.

Two-time winners Jeonbuk and 2008 champions Gamba both move on to four points from their first two games and sit one point clear of third-placed Chiangrai United.

The Thai side won their first match of the group phase when Sivakorn Tiatrakul scored the only goal of the game against Singapore's Tampines Rovers three minutes from time.

Only the winners are guaranteed to advance to the knockout rounds along with the three best runners-up across the five groups being played by east Asian clubs.

In Group G in Bangkok, Ryogo Yamazaki scored a first-half hat-trick to seal a third win in a row for Nagoya Grampus in the Japanese side's 4-0 defeat of Ratchburi.

Yamazaki headed home in the 26th and 31st minutes to give Nagoya a two-goal cushion over the winless Thais before side-footing home the third in first half injury time. Manabu Saito completing the rout 21 minutes from time.

Nagoya are three points clear of Pohang Steelers at the top of the standings as the group hit the halfway point after the South Koreans recorded a 4-1 victory over Johor Darul Ta'zim.

Pohang remain in second after Borys Tashchy, Kang Sang-woo and Lim Sang-hyub all scored from the penalty spot in their win over the seven-time Malaysian champions.

Matches in the Asian Champions League are currently being played in centralised biosecure hubs in Thailand and Uzbekistan due to the ongoing pandemic.

Teams from west Asia have already completed their group phase matches, with the Round of 16 to be played in September while the final is slated for late November.

(Reporting by Michael Church, Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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