It was not just a win. It was a statement win. 8-1 hammering of Philippines only enhances China’s ever growing reputation on the world stage. 8 goals and 7 goalscorers is a testament to China’s powerful display.
After just a win to show as his record as China boss, Marcelo Lippi needed a win. He got an emphatic one. Philippines were all over the pitch and the result has highlighted China’s continued meteoric rise in International Football.
China got off to a nervy start after a missed penalty in the first minute itself. But they amended things when Reng Hang put the team ahead after just 3 minutes. Confusion from a corner saw Hang get an open header from just 7 yards out. The wrong footed keeper could only watch as the ball clanged in off the upright. China continued to dominate even after their goal. Philippines looked like boys playing against men to be fair.
With the possession battle won, China turned to screw and got a second through Zhi Xiao just before the half hour mark. With just one man in the box, the inch perfect cross was headed home by Xiao. It was a sweeping move as China quickly turned defence into attack. But their joy was short lived as Philippines pulled one back through Misagh Baghadoran. It was the funniest of goals as China failed to deal with a long ball into their half. The keeper came forward but only partially cleared it. The incoming shot deflected into Baghadoran’s path who made no mistake and made it 2-1.
Lippi would have been concerned with the way the goal was concerned. A lack of communication was taken advantage off as three players rushed to the goal line but no one picked the rushing striker.
Ten minutes later the lead was back up to two. A neat one-two at the edge of the box lead to a cutback that was emphatically smashed into the back of the net. China headed into the break with a two goal breathing space.
The second half saw China blow away Philippines with total domination. Wang Yangpo was the first to oblige. Defense all over the place, a through ball and the resulting cross was converted and it was 4-1 China. Next to score was Ying Hongbo. Another through ball, more trouble. Though this time Philippines did deal with the first ball. The interception however fell kindly to Hongbo who put the ball into the back of the net agonisingly close to the outstretched arms of the helpless goalkeeper.
China hit Philippines for 6 midway through the second half. A headed ball over the ‘defence’ was placed across the keeper into the far post by Zhang Xizhe. There was still more than enough time for Deng Hangwen to score a quick fire brace. The first goal was the goal of the match. Picking the ball on the right wing, Hangwen cut inside and unleashed a fearsome shot from the corner of the penalty box that the keeper could do nothing about. The 8th was similar to the 7th. A quick stepover to lose the maker and a low shot into the far post.
It was the perfect way to prepare for the Syrian test coming next week. Lippi and the rest of China will be hoping for an encore as China hope bring their World Cup Qualification back on track.