GAMBA OSAKA
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2021.6.13

Gamba Osaka 0-3 Urawa Reds

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This game was a strange one to watch.... Gamba Osaka, with all the possession, shots, corners, the ball in the opposition half for much of the game and 3-0 down at half time?!
The team were still suffering injuries and missing the likes of Kim Young-gwon, Hiroki Fujiharu, Yuki Yamamoto, Yuya Fukuda, Ryo Takao and Yuji Ono, and playing players out of position or those lacking experience for this kind of game, as the club as a whole felt pressure from their position in J1, and a coming Asian Champions league schedule to fit into their crowded calendar.
Having to play Keisuke Korokawa and Koheo Okuno as full backs in a back four tells much of the story and injured players can not return soon enough for the team. The run of results were too much for the powers-that-be at the club and Tsuneyasu Miyamoto had been relieved of his duties, to be replaced, for now, by Masanobu Matsunami.

Gamba came out of the blocks fast and Takashi Usami was testing young Reds goalkeeper Zion Suzuki as early as the 7th minute as Gamba got on top in the early phases of the game, but the away team went ahead in the 16th minute as Danish strike Kasper Junker headed home. Five minutes later Reds were 2-0 up as Tatsuya Tanaka poked in a drilled low cross to double his team's lead.
Somehow it was 3-0 just before half time as Gen Shoji policed his player out to the edge of the area as they raced down the wing together. Shoji then made what seemed like a calculated tackle to snuff out the danger, but the ball ricocheted badly for the defender, and back into the path of Tanaka, who crossed for Junker to grab his second of the night. 3-0 to the way team and game over already!
The 2nd half went better for the home team, with Gamba having chances to score but the ball just did not run for them tonight and the game ended in a home defeat for Matsunami's Gamba, who will be hoping for better results in the coming weeks. Usami looked dangerous at times and Leandro Pereira looked to be settling in at last, but this night belonged to the away team.

team - Higashiguchi, Kurokawa, Miura, Shoji, Okuno, Yajima, Ideguchi (Wellington Silva, 78), Kurata (Ju, 78), Tiago Alves (Tsukamoto, 46), Usami (Patric, 71), Ichimi (Leandro Pereira, 46)