for 2017 in this undeserved loss to Yokohama F・Marinos as they went
down 2-1 to goals from Hugo Vieira and Keito Endo.
A healthy 23,000+ fans saw this Saturday night match and the vast
majority went home disappointed with just Shun Nagasawa's consolation
goal to remember.
Hwang Ui-jo almost gave the home team an early boost when Yuji
Nakazawa in the F•Marinos defence mis-controlled a simple pass in
midfield and the ball fell to the Korean striker, who blasted a left
foot shot first time from 35 yards out that the relieved goalkeeper
watched skip past his left-hand post. Then it was Jin Izumisawa's turn
to come close with a left-foot shot that went just wide of the post as
Gamba continued to look for that opening goal.
Next up we saw a lovely controlled passing moving open the away
defence on the left side allowing Hiroki Fujiharu to cut inside and
shoot from 20 yards but the increasingly-busy Hiroki Iikura in the
away goal had it covered this time and the F•Marinos defence held out
for a scoreless break.
Soon after the break, though Gamba found themselves behind to the
proverbial goal from nowhere as a long ball out to the left bounced
fortunately for Martinis - or unfortunately for Genta Miura, depending
on your persuasion - and the grateful speedster sent in a low left
foot cross for Hugo Vieira to deftly flick home over the helpless
Masaaki Higashiguchi. The beginning of the move may have been
hit-and-hope but the finish was sublime.
The 68th minute saw almost a carbon copy of the goal, with Gamba once
more going all out in attack and a long clearance finding Martinus
again. This time is cross was met by Naoki Maeda but he saw his shot
equaled by the save of the day, the week, the season in the shape of
Higashiguchi's outstretched hand.
Gamba continued to press for a goal, as they had been doing all game,
but now it was the equaliser they needed and Nagasawa finally got the
space and made no mistake with his header in the 78th minute.
The level pegging was short-lived as Maeda poked home the rebound,
after a Higashiguchi save from a Martinus shot. No points from this
game after the majority of possession, passes, shots, etc. But it is
indeed goals that matter in this game!
Team - Higashiguchi, Oh (Hatsuse, 74), Kim (Akasaki, 90+2), Miura,
Fujiharu, Ideguchi, Endo, Kurata, Izumisawa (Yonekura, 66), Hwang,
Goal - 78' Shun NAGASAWA