Kitchee kept their hopes alive in the AFC Champions League, thanks to a late goal by Law Tsz-chun that gave them a desperately needed 3-2 victory over Chiangrai United of Thailand in Buriram on Thursday. Law was in the right place at the right time after Dejan Damjanovic’s shot following a Rusland Mingazov cross was pushed out by Chiangrai goalkeeper before the Hong Kong international slammed the rebound into the roof of the net to seal victory for Kitchee on 81 minutes. Kitchee head coach Chu Chi-kwong was relieved after the match as they conceded a penalty in first-half stoppage but were able to come back to lead 2-1 after the break through goals of second substitute Alex Akande and prolific striker Damjanovic, who has now netted a record of 41 goals in the top tier cup competition. In a rain-interrupted match which had its start delayed by an hour, Sarawut Inpaen put Chiangrai United back on equal terms on 79 minutes through a header, but no sooner had the home team celebrated than Law’s goal came to make the difference. 😏 Alex Akande made finding the bottom corner look easy! #ACL2022 | #CRUvKIT pic.twitter.com/0eOO7c6TWk — #ACL2022 (@TheAFCCL) April 28, 2022 “The result is good because we won,” said Chu, “but the heavy rain made it difficult to build up the attack and then unfortunately we lost a penalty before the end of the first half. But the boys never gave up and fought until the end. It was very exciting as Chiangrai also played very well but it was a good result for us.” The coach said they had already prepared the situation when they went down in the first half after Sean Tse Ka-keung brought down Chiangrai forward Ryuji Hirota inside the area for a penalty. “We need to win the game or at least get one point before the last game on Sunday and that is why we put one more player up front in the second half,” Chu said. “We responded well to the situation and made the necessary changes. “I would also like to thank the fans back home for watching the game as it’s already midnight in Hong Kong. I came with Kitchee here last year with one win and one draw against Thai Port in the Champions League and I am happy to see the improvement we made this year with two wins over the home side.” Hong Kong’s Kitchee stun Chiangrai in AFC Champions League group opener Turkmenistan international Rusland Mingazov, who joined Kitchee ahead of the Champions League, was delighted with his progress. “We had three games in the tournament and every game we played better,” said the midfield powerhouse. “The important thing is the three points we won from this match. We lost to Kobe in the first game but I hope the fans back in Hong Kong can believe in us as we will keep fighting.” The result gave Kitchee six points ahead of Sunday’s final showdown against group leader Vissel Kobe who are just one point ahead. Kobe beat Kitchee 2-1 when they met last week in their first group encounter. The winner of the group can advance to the knockout round of 16 which the Hong Kong champions missed last year but the three best runners-up across five groups in the East region of the competition can also join. Kitchee are currently in third place in the best runner-up table and a good result against Kobe could send them into the knockout round for the first time since 2015.