Reporter Cheng Shan reports. The slogan "Welcome home" was put up in the brand-new "White Jade Bowl" stands in Pudong. In the second round of the Super League in 2023, after a lapse of 1237 days, the Shanghai Harbour Team finally returned to its real home, beating Shenzhen 3-2, which only satisfied the harbour from the result.
SAIC Pudong Football Stadium was completed as early as 2021, but due to various factors, it has never hosted the Super League competition. As the first professional football field built in strict accordance with FIFA standards in China, the most surprising thing about this venue is that the first row of spectators is only 8.5 meters away from the stadium. Although the overall capacity of 33,765 fixed seats is not large, due to the excellent experience of watching the game and the limited number of people entering the stadium, it is still hard to get a ticket for the first home stadium of the new season in the harbor. On the opening day, it was basically "seconds". Many players’ families want tickets, but they can’t find them.
Although this is the first time that the Harbour Team has played a Super League match at SAIC Pudong Football Stadium, the team members already know the situation of the venue very well because the team has already played many warm-up matches here before. On the day before the game, coach Javier did not arrange the pre-game adaptation training in Pudong football field, but still chose to train in the club’s base in Century Park football field.
After defeating the defending champion Wuhan Sanzhen in the first round away, the goal of the seaport returning to Shanghai is more clear. "We must make a good start for the first time. We have no excuse to lose." Facing the Shenzhen team with young players as the team, the task given by the top management of the seaport before the game is very clear. Coach Javier has always said that he can’t wait to lead the players to make their debut at the new home. "This ball marks that football has returned to the normal track and is a very good thing for our team and fans. We look forward to playing in front of the fans and hope that everyone will play a wonderful level and finally achieve a good result. "
The Shenzhen team, which was plagued by unpaid wages, passed the admission at the last minute, but they were impressive in the first round of the season, defeating Qingdao Manatee 2-1, and even the powerful seaport dared not take it lightly. In the starting lineup, Haigang sent three foreign AIDS PK Shenzhen single foreign aid, Pingke, Oscar and Vargas started, and Achim Peng played in the starting lineup.
Although there is a big disparity in personnel strength, the Shenzhen team continued its good state in the first game. In the first half, Jiang Guangtai scored a goal in front of the harbor, which was also the first goal of the Super League in the new stadium. At half-time, the harbor was obviously superior to the opponent. However, in the second half, Jiang Guangtai was sent off for blocking Archimpen’s single-knife foul. Although Pinko’s next goal stabilized the morale of the army, the harbor was obviously in decline due to the ten-man battle. Shenzhen team Jiang Zhipeng scored a corner kick directly, and before the end of the second half, he assisted Archimpen to equalize the score in the away game.
For the first home draw, the seaport naturally couldn’t accept it. Javier changed into Li Ang, Wei Zhen, Li Shuai, Maiti River and paulinho. It was paulinho who sent an assist to Lei Wu in the 87th minute, and the latter made a quick forward attack and finally fixed the score at 3-2.
A game with great disparity in strength satisfied the seaport, and the process also made the fans on the scene feast their eyes. After the game, Jiang Zhipeng, a Shenzhen player, said frankly, "Even if the other team was missing one person, we still looked a little passive, and it was still a pity that the corner details were not handled well." For him, who played for the East Asian Football Club at the beginning of his career, he still has a lot of thanks to the Shanghai fans. After the game, Jiang Zhipeng not only thanked the Shenzhen fans who came from afar, but also bowed to the harbour fans and got a lot of praise.
At the last moment, Lei Wu, the hero, received the biggest cheers. In the stands of the major fan associations in the harbor, the red ocean that has not been seen for a long time was rendered. "This home atmosphere is great!" Lei Wu went to the sidelines to celebrate the victory with his teammates and fans. Compared with the previous home, the interaction here was closer. "I am very happy and enjoy it. Behind the goal are our fans. At this distance, when facing them, everyone will be very motivated."
Javier, the harbor coach, also thought that the game was rather ups and downs. "We created some troubles for ourselves, and most of the time we played with 10 people." Javier said, "The final result is satisfactory, but I feel that my heart can’t stand it."
It is worth mentioning that in the face of the difficulties in the scene, Javier was very frank. "I will take on all the problems in the game, and I am very happy that the team has not given up. Finally, I want to express my gratitude to the fans, who have played an important role in our winning game. We know that we need to give more excellent performance to the fans, and we will focus on the next game. "
This game is also the second consecutive start of the new aid Pingke, and he scored the first goal after joining the harbor. Regarding his performance, Javier said: "My evaluation of him is positive, he is slowly adapting, and his state will definitely get better and better with the deepening of the league. Pinko is a very good person and a very professional player. "
After winning this victory, Haigang is currently leading the Super League standings (tied with Yatai and leading Shenhua in goal difference). However, it is still worrying whether they can sit firmly in the top spot in the Super League. Next week, the harbor will experience a difficult week of doubles, in which they will go to the away game to challenge Cangzhou Lions on 26th, and then they will return to the home game to start the same city derby with Xinshenhua.