Caltex Socceroo striker Tim Cahill scored a crucial goal for Hangzhou Greentown overnight to help the club secure a vital win while former Hyundai A-League centre back Michael Thwaite was on target in a thriller against Trent Sainsbury's Chinese Super League side.
Cahill scored the opening goal with a trademark header as Hangzhou ran out 4-2 winners at Yanbian Funde.
The 36-year-old, who is off-contract at the CSL club later this month, timed his run to perfection to get on the end of a cross from the left, burying his header into the bottom corner.
It was Cahill’s fourth goal in 16 CSL appearances this season and has helped Hangzhou jump up from 15th to 13th on the ladder.
Cahill’s goal comes amid speculation he could be getting close to a move to the Hyundai A-League, with Melbourne City among the favourites to secure his signature.
Elsewhere in China over the weekend, there were three Aussies in action as Jiangsu Suning won a seven-goal thriller 4-3 over Liaoning Whowin.
While Trent Sainsbury had the last laugh as Suning held on for a massive win to move into second spot in the CSL, Michael Thwaite was on the scoresheet for the visitors.
Dario Vidosic played 69 minutes for Liaoning in his second appearance since making the switch from Western Sydney Wanderers.
Defender Ryan McGowan set up a last-minute winner for Henan Jianye who prevailed 1-0 over Beijing Guoan, while Apostolos Giannou played an hour as Guangzhou R&F beat Shijiazhuang Ever Bright 4-2.
In the J-League, Nathan Burns played almost 90 minutes and had an assist but it wasn’t enough as FC Tokyo were overrun to lose 3-2 at Sagan Tosu.
Midfielder Billy Celeski was substituted on 68 minutes as his Ventforet Kofu were trounced 3-0 at home against Vissel Kobe.
Ex-Melbourne Victory defender Adrian Leijer played a full match in Korea as his Suwon FC drew 2-2 with league-leaders Jeonbuk FC, while Tomi Mrcela was a late substitute for Jeonnam Dragons in their 1-0 defeat to Seongnam FC.
Both Matt Smith and Mark Bridge played full matches in Thailand, with Smith’s Bangkok Glass drawing 0-0 at Army United, while Bridge’s Chiangrai United were beaten 2-1 by Buriram.
Socceroo left-back Alex Gersbach looks to have forced his way into the first-team at Rosenborg, playing 90 minutes of their 0-0 draw at FK Bodo/Glimt in Norway.
In European friendly action, Awer Mabil scored the final goal as FC Midtjylland crushed Skive IK 4-0, Mitch Langerak played the first half and kept a clean sheet in VFB Stuttgart’s 2-1 win over SG Sonnenhof Großaspach and Mustafa Amini played until half-time for new club Aarhus GF in the 1-1 draw with BK Häcken.
Make sure you're there when the Socceroos take on Japan on October 11. Sign up to the Football Family for first access to tickets when they go on sale on Thursday 7 July at 12PM.
Mixed news for Caltex Socceroos duo in Champions League qualifying
Milos Degenek’s Red Star Belgrade are still alive in their bid to qualify for this season’s UEFA Champions League, but there was heartbreak for Tom Rogic’s Celtic. After a 1-1 draw at home in the first leg, Celtic lost 2-1 against Greek side AEK Athens on Wednesday morning to
Young Socceroos set for kick off in 2018 SBS Cup
A selection of Australia’s finest U18 footballers commence their 2018 SBS Cup campaign in Japan tomorrow evening. Ante Milicic’s side take on the host nation at Fujieda Stadium at 7.30pm kick off (AEST). AUSSIES ABROAD: Maclaren, Vukovic impress in Europe READ: Why Rene
Instant MLS impression a promising sign for Brad Smith
Brad Smith played just over four hours of football for Bournemouth last season. But it took 73 minutes for the Caltex Socceroos fullback to claim accord with new club Seattle Sounders after an impressive Major League Soccer debut yesterday. AUSSIES ABROAD: Maclaren, Vukovic