Asia AFC Champions League

Angels Edge Out Kitchee to Maintain Perfect ACL Start

True Bangkok United made it three wins out of three after the Angels had beaten Hong Kong champions Kitchee 2-1 in Wednesday’s AFC Champions League match at the Hong Kong Stadium.

Having lost both of their opening ACL matches this season, hosts Kitchee had a promising start. In the 6th minute, Fernando’s long ball caught Bangkok United’s goalkeeper Pathiwat Khammai off guard, allowing Jakob Jantscher to score an early tap-in. Making things even worse for Bangkok United, their star midfielder Thitipan Puangchan suffered a severe knee injury in the 21st minute and was replaced by Lebanon international Bassel Jradi.

As the game progressed, Bangkok United gained control and leveled the score just before half-time, with Rungrath Poomchantuek capitalizing on Mahmoud Eid’s precise cross.

The second half saw the visitors taking the lead for the first time after a penalty was awarded following a VAR review of Fernando’s handball in the area, which Willen Mota coolly converted.

Both teams had opportunities to change the scoreline; Everton’s header hit the crossbar, while Ruslan Mingasov forced a save from Pathiwat. Kitchee’s Charlie Scott and substitute Igor Sartori also tested the opposition’s defense.

Despite a late red card for Jradi, reducing Bangkok United to 10 men, Kitchee couldn’t capitalize on their advantage. Despite a fierce attack on the Bangkok United goal, Kitchee suffered their third consecutive continental defeat, while the Angels cemented themselves on top of Group F with three wins out of three, having beaten Singapore’s Lion City Sailors and South Korean giants Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors in their previous outings.