Anelka`s Chinese league debut ends in loss

Beijing: French striker Nicolas Anelka put on an impressive show in his Chinese Super League (CSL) debut but it was not enough to save Shanghai Shenhua from losing their first outing this season 2-3 to Beijing Guoan.

Piao Cheng opened scoring for the home side with just two minutes from the end of the first half, and Manu, the third foreign footballer of Guoan, added the second shortly into the second half, before Shanghai`s Joel Griffith was brought down in the D and he converted the ensuing penalty himself.

Anelka, the most high-profile signing to date in the CSL, scored the equalizer in the 65th minute for the visitors.

It was the only real chance for Anelka since the former Chelsea forward was hardly backed by his teammates in midfield throughout the game.

Just a quarter later, Beijing`s new signing Mao Jianqing, former Shanghai player, headed in a free kick to seal a hard-fighting victory for the host team Friday.

Having joined the Shenhua team last January with a two-year contract worth more than 200,000 pounds (about USD 313,000) per week, Anelka missed the CSL`s opening round due to injury last weekend when the Shenhua were forced a 1-1 home draw by Jiangsu Shuntian.

"I think it`s still too soon to tell whether or not Anelka is worth the money," Shanghai`s head coach Jean Amadou Tiaga was quoted as saying by Xinhua.