Guangzhou Evergrande’s hopes to defend their Asian Champions League title are hanging by a thread after a 1-0 losing at the hands of Urawa Reds in Japan on Tuesday.
Yuki Muto’s header seven minutes after half-time consigned Luiz Felipe Scolari’s men to their second defeat in four games and left them rooted to the bottom of Group H.
Urawa, meanwhile, are in second place in the group on seven points, two behind leaders Sydney FC, who beat Pohang Steelers 1-0 earlier on the day.
“It was a tough game and we had some good chances but Urawa played with a lot of courage, even after scoring,” the Brazilian World Cup winning coach Scolari told reporters.
“Our players played without fear even in adverse circumstance and I am very satisfied with the way they performed today.
“We are not God and cannot be expected to win championship every time,” he insisted.
The Chinese Super League champions have just two points so far, five points off from Urawa’s place and a spot in the last 16, this situation potentially lead their title defence seemingly at an end.