Kim: It was a blessed night for HK

Malaysia Super League: Leandro Velasquez GOLAZO for JDT

Hong Kong head coach Kim Pan-gon was beyond ecstatic after his side drew 0-0 with China in their 2018 World Cup qualifier at the Baoan Stadium in Shenzhen on Thursday. 

For Hong Kong, the draw was almost as good as a victory, as they have not beaten China since securing a 2-1 victory in Beijing in 1985. 

China had numerous opportunities to score during the match, but hit the woodwork four times as they failed to break the deadlock.

Kim admitted that his side were lucky not to lose on Victory Day, which is a holiday that commemorates the end of the People’s War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression.

"You can say it was a blessed night for Hong Kong," Kim told the South China Morning Post. "I am very proud of the players – even though we are in pre-season we gave our best to hold the opponents. They gave all their and fought for the name of Hong Kong soccer.

"China created a number of good chances in the first half, but our players continued to fight under difficult conditions. That’s more important than luck."

Meanwhile, China head coach Alain Perrin was less than impressed with his side's performance and conceded that the national team let their fans down. 

"It was disappointing that we failed to win the match at home," he said. "But it was not one of the most frustrating games of my career. 

"This kind of game you can lose, you can get a long ball or corner and concede at any time so though one point is not enough, I know it could have been worse."

Hong Kong, who sit atop their group standings with seven points, will face Qatar on Tuesday, while China will take on Maldives.