After almost a two-month break, the Chinese Super League returns this week. Before the break, the Guangzhou and Beijing Guoan games were postponed for week five to protect the national team from China’s crucial World Cup qualifiers. With those qualifiers out of the way, these games have now been rescheduled and will be the first games in the next phase of the CSL 2021 season.
Both Guoan and Guangzhou found good form before the break. And it will be interesting to see if they can take that momentum with them in the weeks ahead.
Henan Songshan Longmen versus Guangzhou
Thursday 15ththe July
Huadu Stadium, Guangzhou
Henan’s last game before the break gave them a unique opportunity to take their first win of the season. He gave up a 2-0 lead in the second half and fell 3-2 against Chongqing.
Henan is unlikely to get that first win this Thursday. Against a team from Guangzhou, which had done well before the break, he won in a row against two of the top-selling teams of this winter.
Henan’s greatest hope is to show a fight performance similar to that of their performance against Shandong and hope they have a few lucky breaks along the way. However, their chances are severely affected by the suspension of Bosnian center-back Toni Sunjic. Sunjic has been the glue that has held Henan’s backline together this season and without him they could have a very tough evening.
One to watch – Elkeson – Has started this season slowly but could score a few goals on Thursday night.
forecast– A ruthless Guangzhou sends Henan with an emphatic 4-0 victory.
Beijing Guoan – Hebei
Friday 16ththe July
Jiangyin Sports Center Stadium, Suzhou
Slaven Bilic’s Beijing Guoan has got its season back on track with back-to-back wins and will face a real test this Sunday to take on a Hebei team that are unbeaten so far this season.
Hebei’s success so far this year is largely due to a solid and well-organized back four that have been difficult to break down. If Guoan makes it for the third year in a row, Zhang Xizhe could be Guoan’s key figure. With Jonathan Viera out injured, they need Zhang Xizhe’s creative flair to bring strikers Zhang Yuning and Cedric Bakambu into play.
One to watch – Zhang Xizhe – Might be the key to Hebei’s defense.
forecast – Guoan kept the ball rolling with a 2-0 win.