Own Goal (9)
What a glorious day to be an S-Pulse fan!
Leonard. The lead was doubled just four minutes later when a half cleared ball fell to the recalled Ichikawa. He slammed it back in to the area. Was it a cross? Was it a shot? Who knows! All history will recall is that it took not one, but two deflections on it's was goalward, and ended up in the back of the net. Not surprisingly, it went down as an own goal.
For the rest of the first half we looked the more threatening team, but didn't really look like extending our lead. The next goal came within a minute of the restart, when Montedio burst down the left wing, floated a perfect ball to the far post, and due to the lack of defensive positioning, was slammed home by the blue and white attacker.
We kept surging forward and looked increasingly dangerous and growing in confidence as the game went on. Ten minutes later, an unstoppable Hara run down the wing and an inch perfect cross into the danger area was met by Johnsen for another priceless goal from the big man. They're rarely pretty, but they all count, and we love him for it!
Even after our fourth we weren't done, and were unlucky on a couple of occasions not to have grabbed a fifth. However, when we replaced Okazaki with Jungo and Johnsen with gangly youngster Nagasawa (why not Genki, Kenta?) our threat up from was gone at a stroke, and we just ran the clock down. But let's not be greedy; it was our third league win on the spin and was a great confidence building exercise in front of excellent home crowd. We're up to fifth and a whisker away from the ACL positions.
The defeat for the visitors, their heaviest since joining J1, leaves them without a win in six and drops them down to 15th. After their early season heroics, the reality of a long hard season seems to have arrived, and unless they can string a couple of results together, they'll be staring down the barrel of a relegation battle.
As for us, top work everyone, now bring on Tokyo next week! Before I sign off, I was wondering if it's even worth mentioning that Jubilo lost again today? Is it necessary to point out that when they played Yamagata at home they lost 6-2 and there were nearly 6000 less people in attendance? Not really, but I may as well. :)
GK K. Yamamoto
Fujimoto on for Okazaki (75)
Paulo on for Hyodo (78)
Nagasawa on for Johnsen (82)
Loco Loco celebrations! First, the players:
Next, us lot:
Official Pictures here. Read The Rising Sun's report on this, and all the other J1 matches this weekend, here. Includes full league table.