Japanese Soccer News Yamazaki Nabisco League Cup

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Yamazaki Nabisco League Cup

Semi-final, second legs: September 20

JEF United 3 - 2 Kawasaki Frontale (after extra time)

JEF United will have the chance to defend their League Cup title, after seeing off Kawasaki Frontale in a dramatic semi-final second leg clash. With the scores locked at 2-2 deep into extra-time, captain Yuki Abe stepped up to convert a hotly disputed penalty which sealed JEF United's place in the final.

Yokohama F. Marinos 2 - 1 Kashima Antlers

In the final JEF United will meet three time League Cup champions Kashima Antlers, who saw off Yokohama F. Marinos. Holding a 1-0 advantage from the first leg, Kashima advanced on the away goals rule after losing 2-1 in Yokohama on the night. Atsushi Yanagisawa scored the crucial goal for the Antlers.

Japan National Teams

Gamba Osaka striker Ryuji Bando may be in line for a call up to Ivica Osim's squad for the Kirin World Challenge match against Ghana in Yokohama on October 4. Bando scored again at the weekend, taking his tally to 14 goals from 23 J-League games this season. He is the highest scoring Japanese player in the J-League. Japan's strikers have scored just twice in four games under Osim - both times as substitutes.

Japan's under-17 national team were crowned Asian champions on September 17. They came back from a two goal deficit to defeat DPR Korea 4-2 after extra-time at the AFC Under-17 Championship Final in Singapore. Substitute Hiroki Kawano was the hero, scoring a brace in extra-time. Cerezo Osaka's Yoichiro Kakitani, who also scored in the final, was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player. Japan have now qualified for the FIFA under-17 World Cup, along with fellow Asian nations DPR Korea, Syria and Tajikistan.

Copyright © Michael Tuckerman & Soccerphile.com

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