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Chinese Super League

Hong Kong’s Poon relegated to assistant role after leading his Chinese League One club to victory in basement battle

Poon was appointed interim head coach on Monday following the sudden departure of Spaniard Juan Ignacio Martinez

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 27 September, 2018, 1:53pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 27 September, 2018, 1:53pm

Poon Man-chun, the only coach from Hong Kong to lead a Chinese professional side, steered his Meizhou Meixian Techand team to victory in an important relegation match on Wednesday night but afterwards saw his brief stint as manager end abruptly.

Poon was appointed interim head coach of Techand on Monday following the sudden departure of Spaniard Juan Ignacio Martinez.

And the former Rangers and Wong Tai Sin manager started his tenure with a bang as Techand came from behind to overcome fellow strugglers Liaoning Whowin 2-1 in Shenyang, their first victory in five games.

Former Guangzhou Evergrande forward Muriqui scored both goals for the visitors, including a penalty equaliser in the first half.

Despite the impressive result, Poon will no more be in charge of the team as Techand announced before the match that Fu Bo, who quit Chinese Super League champions Guangzhou Evergrande on Tuesday, will lead the club in the remaining season. And Fu was already sitting on the bench with Poon during the match.

The Hong Kong coach had said he had no idea of how long he would lead the club when appointed on Monday and would be happy to go back to his role as assistant manager if a new manager took over from him.

Techand, who were promoted from China League Two this season with their sights on back-to-back promotions to the CSL next year, were apparently disappointed with the results under Martinez, one of the reasons that the Spaniard stepped down earlier this week.

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They remain third from the bottom in the table with 30 points, three points ahead of Dalian Transcendence while cellar-dwellers Xinjiang Tianshan Leopard are way behind with only 15 points.

The bottom two teams, with only five rounds remaining, will be relegated while the third bottom team will face a relegation play-off against the team that finishes third in League Two.