However, the big Brazilian’s soft penalty was parried by Wanderers goalkeeper Ante Covic,Runescape 3 Gold, who dived the right way to keep the visitors in front. The mood was darkening at Tianhe stadium and it became bleak when home goalkeeper Zeng Cheng up-ended Mark Bridge, and Tomi Juric coolly slotted the penalty on 57 minutes.
But Guangzhou’s response came swiftly and just four minutes later, Gilardino’s knock-down was smashed home by his compatriot Alessandro Diamanti to make it 1-1 on the night. Guangzhou poured forward but Gilardino, Elkeson and Dong Xuesheng all let good opportunities slip as the champions’ title defence ebbed away.
Elkeson finally hit the net a minute into injury time but there was to be no fairytale comeback for the financially well-endowed team tagged "the Manchester United of Asia".
Meanwhile in Seoul, 210 minutes of goalless football gave way to an extraordinary shoot-out when ‘keeper Yu saved kicks from Hwang Ji-Soo, Kim Jae-Sung and Park Hee-Chul. Kim Jin-Kyu also missed a penalty for FC Seoul but Everton Santos, Osmar Barba and Mauricio Molina converted for the 2013 runners-up to send them through to the last four once again.
In the other semi-final, Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal will meet 2003 AFC Champions League winners Al Ain of the United Arab Emirates, with the first leg in Riyadh on 16 September.