Chonburi rally to draw with Dragons (April 24, 2008)



Thailand Premier League champions Chonburi rallied from two goals down to secure a 2-2 draw with South Korea's Chunnam Dragons to keep alive their hopes of reaching the quarter-finals of the AFC Champions League yesterday. Substitute Pipob On-mo earned the Sharks a precious point with goals in the 56th and 88th minutes after Chunnam, who were reduced to 10 men after 25 minutes, had taken a two-goal lead through Jeong Jun-yeon (5) and Kim Mung-woon (47).


At Supachalasai stadium, the Dragons stunned the Thais in driving rain after just five minutes when Jeong fired home from inside the box. Jeong was then sent off after 25 minutes for a second bookable offence.


Chonburi had numerous scoring chances but failed to send the ball past in-form goalkeeper Dong Gyun.


The Koreans doubled their advantage two minutes after the break when Kim Mung-woon found the back of the net with a low strike from the edge of the area.


Chonburi pulled a goal back after 56 minutes as Pipob headed home from close range. He then snatched a point for the hosts after 88 minutes with a strike from outside the area.


Chonburi coach Jadet Meelarp said the rain caused problems for his team as they could not use their superior speed to maximum effect. ''We could not use our speed to tame Chunnam whose fitness is superior to us,'' Jadet said. ''We can still qualify for the quarter-finals.''


Chunnam coach Park Hang Seo said: ''When we led 2-0, we thought that we would certainly win. We should have been able to hold on to the lead.''


In the other Group G match, Masato Yamazaki scored twice as Japan's Gamba Osaka beat Melbourne Victory 2-0 to consolidate their position at the top with 10 points.


Chonburi have five points, Chunnam four and Melbourne three with two games to go.


In Beijing, Brazilian striker Tiago scored the only goal of the game late in the first half as Beijing Guoan drew level with Kashima Antlers at the top of Group F with a 1-0 victory over the J League champions.


They both have nine points and are almost certain to advance to the quarter-finals.


In the other Group F match in Hanoi, Krung Thai Bank midfielder Pichitphong Choeichiu struck a stoppage time free-kick to earn the Thai League outfit a 2-2 draw with Vietnam's Nam Dinh.


Krung Thai have four points and in theory can still progress to the knock-out phrase, while the Vietnames have one point.