Champions League time - Korean and Chinese Champions do battle

It is Asian Champions League time again this week as eight East-Asian sides do battle for a place in the quarter-finals. The biggest of the four ties as got to be the champions of Korea and China doing battle as Jeonbuk Motors host Shanghai SIPG in the second-leg.   

Jeonbuk looks to advance again 

When Jeonbuk Motors last became champions of Asia in 2016 they defeated Shanghai SIPG at the quarter-final stage 5-0 after drawing the first leg 0-0. The Korean champions will be hoping for much of the same but Wednesday's match could prove to be a lot closer.

The match will take place at 7pm local time at the Jeonju World Cup Stadium with a good crowd expected. Although I would expect a much smaller attendance than the 27,351 that watched in September 2016.

I would say that the K League side are the slight favourites to progress also and was unlucky to come away with only a draw last week in Shanghai. After a surprising exit to Suwon Bluewings last season the team will look to bounce back.

Am sure the home side will be reminded of that 2016 win over the CSL side as motivation for them to win their third Asian title.

This being the tie of the round as both sides are battling it out in their leagues to be champions too. As in one of the tightest K League title races in years, Jeonbuk sits top on goal difference with FC Seoul also on 37 points and Ulsan a point behind in third with a game in hand.

Meanwhile, in the CSL we have a three-horse title race in which Shanghai SIPG currently sit second in as they are level with Guangzhou Evergrande who are in third. The five points clear at the top are Beijing Guoan who is having an incredible season.

As both teams looked well matched this could come down to strikers with Kim Shin-Wook and Lee Dong-Gook looking the likely scorers for the home side. Then with the away side who lost their top goalscorer in Wu Lei in the summer, they have Hulk and Oscar to help out.

Last 16 fixtures 

Sanfrecce Hiroshima v Kashima Antlers (0-1) - Tuesday

Shandong Luneng v Guangzhou Evergrande (1-2) - Tuesday

Ulsan v Urawa Reds (2-1) - Wednesday

Jeonbuk Motors v Shanghai SIPG (1-1) - Wednesday

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