Guangzhou Evergrande have jetted into Sydney in style, flying in on a luxurious private jet ahead of Wednesday night’s AFC Champions League clash with Hyundai A-League club Sydney FC.
In a clear indication of how serious Guangzhou rates the ACL and the huge task facing the Sky Blues, the Chinese club organised two Gulfstream jets to get their stars here as quick and as comfortable as possible.
The defending ACL champions are Asia’s richest club and spared no expense to ensure preparation is right for Wednesday’s clash at the Sydney Football Stadium.
Immediately after their 2-0 Chinese Super Cup win over Trent Sainsbury’s Jiangsu Suning on Saturday night, Guangzhou players rushed to the airport to board their chartered flight to Sydney, thereby giving them an extra day’s prep time Down Under.
It’s a luxury not many clubs around the world can enjoy but something their stars like $65 million man Jackson Martinez can come to expect now playing for the CSL big guns.
Colombian Martinez is Guangzhou’s huge January signing and looms as the real danger-man on Wednesday night, with experience at clubs like Atletico Madrid and Porto.
But he is not their only world class player.
Brazilian Paulinho formerly of Spurs marshals their midfield while another Brazilian – Ricardo Goulart – is regarded one of the best young attacking midfielders coming out of South America right now.
And the man calling the shots is none other than Brazil World Cup-winning coach Luiz Felipe Scolari – also known as Big Phil.
There is likely to be a good number of Guangzhou fans at the match as well with the club reportedly buying more than 9000 tickets for the match to distribute to local fans in the Chinese community in Sydney.