S-Pulse 3-2 Zweigen Kanazawa
Omae 45+1 --------------- Awatari 20
Takagi 90, 95 ------------- Sato 91
Nihondaira Stadium, KO 3pm
Shizuoka city, Shizuoka prefecture
MF Sugiyama (77)
Honda on for Muramatsu (61)
Takagi on for Hattanda (61)
A classic cup tie. Classic in the sense that the underdogs came our roaring (if dogs roared) and the J1 hosts were put in their place as a result. Not even 5000 in Nihondaira against JFL opposition, you can see how we may have had trouble getting ourselves up for this one. Kanazawa on the contrary were all set for a rare game in a top flight stadium and more than motivated. Their early pressure soon paid off with a tidy strike from a corner, and only then did we seem to wake up.
Chances were coming, and when on the back foot Kanazawa were making all kinds of errors, but it was all just a bit too sloppy. The first half stoppage time equaliser was certainly warranted, coming moments after Genki had hit the post. 1-1 was fair at the break, but for all our possession in the second 45, at no point did Kanazawa look out of it. The introduction of Honda and Takagi had a big impact, and that's one of the major differences in J1 and JFL. The big guns will have quality waiting to come on from the bench.
Honda made an impact straight away making a double challenge to prevent a very real goal scoring opportunity for Kanazawa. Up the other end Takagi was doing what he does best, running at defenders, unsettling the opposition and crafting chances. It was in the last minute that he made enough space to rattle off a shot from the edge of the box, and at 2-1 with just stoppage time left to play, the game was won.
Except it wasn't. Not by a long way. Straight up the other end, and the unthinkable happened, an equaliser in the 91st minute for the visitors. The giant flags were out, blocking mine and other's views, so I'm yet to see it properly. Needless to say we weren't happy, but what can you do, but keep cheering the boys on. That we did for the next four minutes, certain that we were headed for extra time. Cue Takagi once more. With the very last action, and the very last kick, he swept it home from the right hand side of the area into the far side netting. Few can place it home from that angle better than him.
Not classic S-Pulse by any means, but a classic cup tie. We were making full use of our squad, rotating to rest legs, and giving Ishige more experience outside his usual position. Glad we avoided extra time, and the game gave those who went something to remember. So with that we're into the hat for the 4th round. To be drawn on Sunday, I believe.
Taken from the TV with a camera, and don't show anything of the build ups to the goals, but better than nothing. Looks like a lot of fun behind the away goal when they equalised.