J1 vs Kashima Antlers: Match Report

Despite Harakawa’s scoring the opener from Inui’s pass, it was the regrettable reverse loss. They could not win the last match of 13 consecutive games.

This section was the last of the 13 consecutive official games. Cerezo Osaka welcomed Kashima Antlers to the Yodoko Sakura Stadium at home and challenged the Meiji Yasuda J1 League Section 30. In this match, Ms. Momiji Nishiya, who is the gold medalist of the Women's Street Skateboarding at the Tokyo Olympics, visited the stadium. She also served as a referee escort and coin toss as well as greeting supporters. In addition, Yusuke Maruhashi, who achieved 300 J1 matches in total at the match against Urawa Reds the other day, was given a bouquet by his family.

After a three days interval from Section 32 against Sanfrecce Hiroshima. Cerezo changed the starting lineup by three. Maruhashi and Riku Matsuda returned to the side back, and Yoshito Okubo played the starter as one of two FWs for the first time in 10 league games. The game progressed at the pace of Kashima, who sharply pressed from the beginning. To Kashima, who strengthened the pressure from the front line and defended with hard body contact, Cerezo tried to get out building up from the bottom line but was not able to move forward easily. Still, in the 7th minute, Okubo, who came out to Riki Harakawa's pass, shook the net, but this was an offside and no goal. In the 26th minute, they made a scene to approach the goal as Maruhashi's sharp FK almost invited the opponent’s own goal. In the 30th and 32nd minute, Kashima broke the left side in quick succession and invited pinches for Cerezo, but Ayumu Seko and GK Kim Jin Hyeon blocked the shots with their bodies in the center and avoided conceding goals. In the first half, although they could not attack as they expected, as Ryuya Nishio showed his good defense repeatedly, they managed to surpass without losing points and entered the half-time.

The second half also started at Kashima's pace, but they proceeded the game without conceding a goal with Kim Jin Hyeon’s good saves. And then in the 58th minute, Cerezo succeeded in scoring the opener to take advantage of one chance. Nishio bounced off the opponent's GK's kick, and Mutsuki Kato competed hard with the opponent in the middle stage, and Harakawa, who came for sandwiching the opponent, stole the ball. As soon as he gave the pass to Takashi Inui, Inui accelerated with a fine touch of dribbling. After attracting the opponent's DF and sending an exquisite pass, Harakawa came running diagonally and calmly shot on the other side. Cerezo took the long-awaited first goal. Yodoko Sakura Stadium got excited about the first goal at home after Mr. Akio Kogiku became a Manager. Cerezo's attack gear went up at once from here, but the accident, in which Inui injured his right leg, happened. In the 63rd minute, Inui and two FWs, Kato and Okubo, were replaced. Motohiko Nakajima, Jun Nishikawa and Adam Taggart entered. With the remaining time, Cerezo wanted to take the second goal while thoroughly managing the risk, but in the 66th minute they were caught up to the tie. Even so, they showed their obsession with their first home victory under the new organization. In the 80th minute Nishikawa, who came out to Riku Matsuda's pass, had a one-on-one with the GK, but the shot with his right foot was blocked by the GK. Nakajima's shot in response to the loose ball was also blocked by the GK.

Then, immediately after that, Seko caught Ayase Ueda who entered the penalty area and gave a PK. Ueda scored this and Cerezo allowed the opponents a reversal. Cerezo, who wanted to get even one winning point, launched an onslaught at the end of the game. In the 86th minute, Adam Taggart jumped into the cross, and in the 89th minute, Seko deflected the CK kicked by Harakawa in the near, and Nishikawa shook the net in the far side, but it was also slightly offside and judged as no goal. After that, Cerezo attacked hard to the end, but could not catch up and the game was over. The first victory of the official game at home under the new organization has been carried over from the next time onwards. In this section, the 13 consecutive official games, that started from the J1 Section 24 against Avispa Fukuoka, were over. "Since the series of matches is over, I would like to share the defensive way in the team and improve the quality of the attack," said Manager Kogiku. First of all, they want to take a good rest and then head to the games in October with refreshed mind and body.