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2020.7.17

Nagoya Grampus 2-2 Gamba Osaka

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Gamba began this game with a three back system, and Kosuke Onose and the returning Yuya Fukuda as wing backs, Fukuda having made it through a half of the J3 Under-23 game at the weekend and deemed fit enough to play. It was the centre backs who made the first impression up front, though, when Takashi Usami swung in a free kick from the left wing that was deflected against the bar. The ball came out to Ryu Takao, who took a stab at the ball and saw his shot blocked, but Genta Miura was sharp enough to react and half volley the ball home - again, after a deflection, and in off the bar as desperate defenders threw themselves everywhere to try to block the shot. The ball bounced down off the bar and the officials deemed the ball had crossed the line and Gamba were ahead.

The home teamed pulled level less than 10 minutes later after their own free kick into the box saw the ball bounce around off numerous heads and feet, as no one could control it, before Mateus seized on the chance and shot across 'keeper Masaaki Higashiguchi and in at the far post.

The confident Fukuda came close to helping Gamba reclaim the lead in the 21st minute as he approached down the left, and then made space for the right foot shot with some trickery and skill, but had to watch his attempt go wide of the far post. It was the home team, though, that made the next breakthrough when Gabriel Xavier needed two bites at the cherry to beat the Gamba 'keeper, who had made a good save on the initial shot only to see the ball fall kindly for the opposition forward to bury it into the net. Half time, and Grampus led 2-1.

Four minutes into the 2nd half saw Gamba almost level again when an Usami run down the left resulted in a cross that Ademilson acrobatically volleyed towards the far post, but the relieved 'keeper saw it drift outside as he stood unable to do anything but watch. Substitutes Yasuhito Endo - playing his 633rd J.League game - Patric and Kazuma Watanabe all combined to give the latter a chance at a left foot shot with around 20 minutes to go, but, again the ball went wide, and the subs worked together again in added time as Patric nodded down a ball into the box for Watanabe to drive home with his right foot and give Gamba a deserved point.

Team - Higashiguchi, Takao, Miura (Yamamoto, 85), Kim, Onose, Fukuda, Ideguchi, Yajima (Endo, 71), Ademilson (Kurata, 61), Ono (Patric, 61), Usami (Watanabe, 61)

Goals:
Genta MIURA 6'
Kazuma WATANABE 90+2'