Korea’s Mo­tors roar into Asian fi­nal

The Myanmar Times - - Sport -

JEONBUK Hyundai Mo­tors stormed into the AFC Cham­pi­ons League fi­nal with a 5-3 ag­gre­gate vic­tory over FC Seoul, de­spite los­ing the semi-fi­nal’s se­cond leg 2-1 yes­ter­day.

Af­ter Jeonbuk had dom­i­nated the first leg 4-1, Brazil­ian marks­man Adri­ano gave the home side hope in the all-Korean semi-fi­nal when he slot­ted a record-equalling 13th goal of the tour­na­ment in the first half.

But Jeonbuk’s Ri­cardo Lopes doused any hopes of a come­back by equal­is­ing on 59 min­utes, be­fore Seoul’s Ko Kwang-Min grabbed a con­so­la­tion goal for Seoul in in­jury time.

Jeonbuk, the 2006 cham­pi­ons, now go into a block­buster two-legged fi­nal next month against fel­low former win­ners Al Ain and their feted play­maker Omar Ab­dul­rah­man.

The K-League lead­ers also reach their third Asian fi­nal de­spite a do­mes­tic scan­dal. They were de­ducted nine points and fined af­ter one of their scouts was con­victed of brib­ing ref­er­ees.

FC Seoul’s Adri­ano was in the thick of it dur­ing an elec­tric first as the hosts pressed hard to over­turn their first-leg goal deficit.

The Brazil­ian shot just wide 16 min­utes in, and headed off-tar­get eight min­utes later. Jeonbuk mid­fielder Kim Bo-Kyung was later blood­ied by a flail­ing el­bow be­fore play­ing on with a ban­daged head.

It was Adri­ano who lifted the home side’s hopes when he charged on to Kim Chi-Woo’s cut­back to put Seoul 1-0 up in the 38th minute, equalling a tour­na­ment record set in 2013 by Guangzhou Ever­grande’s Muriqui.

The Mo­tors’ win sets up a home-an­d­away Asian fi­nal be­tween two sides of sim­i­lar pedi­gree af­ter Al Ain, who ousted Qatar’s El Jaish on Oc­to­ber 18, won the inau­gu­ral edi­tion in 2003 and were run­ners-up two years later. –

Photo: AFP

Jeonbuk Hyundai Mo­tors for­ward Ri­cardo Lopes (cen­tre) fights for the ball with FC Seoul mid­fielder Os­mar Barba Ibanez dur­ing an AFC Cham­pi­ons League semi-fi­nal se­cond leg in Seoul on Oc­to­ber 19. Jeonbuk lost the match 2-1, but won the semi-fi­nal on ag­gre­gate, 5-3.

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