J1 vs Nagoya Grampus: Match Report

This section that was with spectators since the opening game. Despite the offense keeping possession, one point was far and the game ended as defeat for the first time in this season.


In the previous section, Cerezo Osaka was the only team that won 3 consecutive opening games and became the leader of the league. In this section it was a match with the Nagoya Grampus at home. After 2 games of “Remote Match” since the league restarted, it was with spectators in this time. The generous applause was sent from the stand to the players who showed up for the warming-up, and it made us feel that J League was back to normal little by little.

In 5th minutes of the match, Tatsuhiro Sakamoto dribbled from the side to the center and made a chance, and in following 6th minutes, they broke the left side and finally Naoyuki Fujita made a middle shot. It was slightly over the cross bar, but showed a good start. Cerezo attacked by keeping the possession even after drinking time. In 30th minutes, the header of Bruno Mendes to react Riku Matsuda’s cross flew to the good course but was blocked by GK.

On defense side, they did not let Nagoya make opportunities, but when they gradually suffered from Nagoya's press and more pass mistakes were made at connection, in 38th minutes, the slight opening was found and they lost the point from CK. Considering the game development, it was a regrettable goal.

In the second half to chase one point, Lotina head coach took the quick decision to break the situation. When Yuta Toyokawa was thrown in instead of Bruno Mendes from the start of the second half, Matsuda made a strong shot from the sign play at FK in 50th minutes, but it was slightly outside the frame. In 52nd minutes, Ken Tokura replaced Hiroaki Okuno, and Lucas Mineiro replaced Fujita at the same time. And in 61st minutes, as the fourth substitution card, Yoichiro Kakitani was sent to the pitch in place of Hiroshi Kiyotake.

It was 61st minutes just after the offense was strengthened. When the ball was stolen in the middle, Hiroyuki Abe, who had repeatedly scored many points at Yanmar Stadium Nagai, had a strong middle shot. It became the development to chase 2 points for Cerezo, and in 70th minutes, Eiichi Katayama was sent to the pitch as a replacement of Sakamoto, and when they used up the substitution frame of five players, they started the aggressive offense from there.

In the front line, Tokura and Toyokawa put their bodies to work to keep the ball in and dived into the cross.
Katayama created an opportunity from long throw. Kakitani also tried to break through the side in a combination with Yusuke Maruhashi, but they could not make a scoring chance from Nagoya, who strengthened his defense. Cerezo aimed at the goal to the end with the cheering of the supporters, but could not fully break Nagoya's solid defense and the game ended. “We are glad that there are supporters and it has helped us. But we are sorry that we could not deliver the victory,” Toyokawa told his regrets.

In order to respond to the wishes of supporters who continued to applaud before, during, and after the game, definitely we would like to deliver victory in the next section and next home game.