United City FC were denied a historic victory by Beijing FC as the two sides battled to a 1-1 draw in their first match in Group I of the AFC Champions League, Sunday in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
United City, the reigning Philippines Football League (PFL) champions, looked to be on their way to gaining three points after skipper Stephan Schröck scored the opener in the 28th minute, finding the back of the net from 20 yards.
But despite dominating possession in the second half, United City could not add a second goal. Both Hikaru Minegishi and Bienvenido Maranon tested Beijing FC goalkeeper Guo Quanbo, who did well to deny them.
The breakthrough for Beijing FC came in the 73rd minute when Liang Shaowen scored off a 25-yard free kick to equalize.
United City tried to go ahead but could not break the Beijing FC defense. Mark Hartmann came closest but his late strike hit the crossbar.
Both sides settled for a point, behind group leaders Kawasaki Frontale which beat Daegu FC, 3-2, in their own opening match.