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Zenit sign Bart Simpson

The Toe Poke 14 hours ago
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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 3, 2006

Japan's Asian Champions League jinx goes on

TOKYO, May 3 (Reuters) - Japan's Asian Champions League jinx was extended on Wednesday by two sides from fierce regional rivals South Korea.

J-League champions Gamba Osaka and Emperor's Cup winners Tokyo Verdy were bidding to become the first Japanese teams to reach the knockout stages. Both failed miserably.

Gamba were held to a 1-1 draw by visiting Chonbuk Motors, leaving them five points behind Group E leaders Dalian Shide of China.

Cho Jin-soo's opener for Chonbuk in first-half injury time was cancelled out by Satoshi Yamaguchi in the 74th minute but it was not enough to keep Gamba's hopes alive.

Liu Cheng's fourth-minute strike gave Dalian a 1-0 victory at Vietnam's Da Nang. The Chinese have 12 points from five games, two more than Chonbuk. Dalian travel to South Korea in their final match on May 17.

South Korea forward Lee Chun-soo swept home a free kick from the edge of the box just before halftime to earn Ulsan Tigers a quarter-final spot with a 1-0 victory at home to Verdy.

Ulsan finished with six points from two games. Ulsan and Verdy were the only teams in Group F following the expulsion of Thailand's Tobacco Monopoly and Arema Malang of Indonesia.

China's Shanghai Shenhua booked their place in the semi-finals with a 4-2 win at Vietnam's Dong Tam in Group G.

There were eight further Asian Champions League games taking place across the Middle East later on Wednesday.