Mikel, Ighalo Make Losing Debuts in the Chinese League
John Obi Mikel made his debut in the Chinese Super League for Tianjin TEDA on Saturday as the club went down 2-0 to Shandong Luneng at Jinan Olympic Sports Center Stadium.
Mikel, who captained the team for the entire 90 minutes, was unable to rescue Jaime Pacheco’s men from bowing to the hosts as their dismal run of form continues, Goal writes.
Tianjin TEDA, who failed to win a single pre-season game, was undone by strikes from Binbin Liu and Papiss Cisse’ in the 78th and 82nd minutes respectively.
Mikel’s Super Eagles colleague Brown Ideye – who recently joined from Olympiacos was not listed for the encounter as he’s barely settled in.
The defeat places Tianjin TEDA in the 15th position ahead of their next league encounter with Jiangsu Suning FC on March 10.
Elsewhere in the Super League, Odion Ighalo’s Changchun Yatai crumbled 5-1 to Shanghai SIPG FC at the Shanghai Stadium.
Ighalo, who completed the switch from Watford in January, lasted for the entire duration of the game but was caged as Elkeson’s hat-trick plus Hulk and Lei Wu’s goals handed his team a massive defeat despite Xiaodong Fan giving them an early lead.
Sitting at the base of the Chinese Super League with -4 goals difference, Changchun Yatai will take a shot at their first league win against Guangzhou R&F F.C. on March 12.
Both Ighalo and Mikel were dropped by Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr for this month’s friendly internationals with Senegal and Burkina Faso.
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