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2018.11.14

Urawa Reds 1-3 Gamba Osaka

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Gamba Osaka went into this away game against a team that consider them great rivals without Japan international goalkeeper Masaaki Higashiguchi, but with a more than capable deputy in Mizuki Hayashi. Goals from Kosuke Onose, Hwang Ui-jo and Ademilson later the team returned home with another three points and continued to climb the J1 table under the watchful eye of Tsuneyasu Miyamoto. The winning run extended to seven matches, with 13 goals scored in those matches and just four conceded.

It was a quiet 1st half in front of goal as both teams looked to control the game and create chances, but those chances came few and far between until Gamba took a hold of the game in the closing minutes of the half. A 41st-minute Yasuhito Endo free kick saw Bueno rising at the far post to put a header inches wide of the post with the goalkeeper helpless, but the goal was coming!

With minutes to go to half time Ademilson controlled a ball in midfield, attempted to flick it over Yuki Abe who only managed to head it into the path of Onose. The youngster allowed the ball to bounce and then let fly from 30 yards to bury the ball in the back of the net. A goal-of-the-season contender, and Gamba had the deserved lead at the break.

The home team got themselves back into the game somehow, just after the restart, after the referee ignored some simulation from Yuki Muto in midfield - trying to get a free kick - and what a favour the referee did for Reds in allowing the game to continue. The referee signalled for Muto to get up when he could easily have given a free kick to Gamba for simulation, his leniency giving Reds a huge break. The ball fell to Kazuki Nagasawa whose weak right-foot shot was just far enough away from the 'keeper that he had to parry it, and the ball fell to Shinzo Koroki with an open goal to tap into. 1-1 and all to play for.

Just after the hour mark Gamba were back ahead when a Reds attack was broken up in the away half and Yasuhito Endo fed the ball to Hwang on the left wing. Taking the ball on the half way line, the Korean target man advanced, cut inside and unleashed a right-foot curler from the edge of the area to put Gamba back in their rightful place - ahead of Urawa Reds!

The third Gamba goal was so "Gamba-like" in its simplicity, yet it was achieved through hard work, running, use of space and communication. The Reds defence attempted to clear yet another Gamba attack but Hiroki Fujiharu and Endo attacked their man in unison and sprung the ball free. The pair then exchanged passes to create space, with Shu Kurata adding a pass in there too as he joined in, the final pull back to space for Ademilson to step into and shoot past Shusaku Nishikawa was perfect and, while the Brazilian didn't seem to catch the shot perfectly, it was enough to beat the 'keeper and Gamba confirmed the three points!


Team - Hayashi, Oh, Miura, Fabio, Fujiharu, Endo, Konno, Onose (Nakamura, 89), Kurata, Ademilson (Ichimi, 90+2), Hwang (Watanabe, 75)


Goals:
ONOSE 43'
HWANG 62'
ADEMILSON 69'