Rain ruins top-of-the-table clash

Japan Soccer News


Referee Masayoshi Okada took centre stage at Kashima Stadium as he called a halt to the top-of-table clash between Kashima Antlers and Kawasaki Frontale.

With Kawasaki leading 3-1, they were left furious when the match was abandoned after 73 minutes as monsoonal rains swept across the ground.

Had the result stood, Kawasaki would have cut Kashima's lead at the top to just four points.

Instead the full ninety minutes will be replayed at a date yet unknown.

Chong Tese had given Kawasaki the lead with a fabulous strike on twenty minutes, with the North Korean international's thumping strike crashing in off the underside of the crossbar.

Kashima pulled a goal back through Marquinhos, but Chong Tese was again on hand to head the visitors back into the lead before the half-time break.

Kashima Stadium.

As the rain pounded the 2002 FIFA World Cup venue in the second half, veteran Kawasaki striker Juninho stunned Kashima goalkeeper Hitoshi Sogahata with a shot that skidded in at the near post.

Just when Kawasaki thought they had made inroads on runaway league leaders Kashima, referee Okada stepped in to abandon play courtesy of a waterlogged pitch.

There were angry scenes at the end as furious Kawasaki players berated match officials for their decision to call time on the clash.

Elsewhere JEF United inched closer towards relegation when they lost 1-0 to Albirex Niigata at Fukuda Denshi Arena in Chiba, while local rivals Kashiwa Reysol kept alive their chances of escaping the drop as they beat Nagoya Grampus 3-2 on the road.

Yosuke Kashiwagi scored twice as Sanfrecce Hiroshima defeated Yokohama F. Marinos 3-2 at Big Arch Stadium, while a small crowd turned out at Kamoike Stadium in neutral Kagoshima to see Kyoto Sanga beat FC Tokyo 2-1 - with the capital club losing Brazilian striker Cabore to Qatari club Al-Arabi during the week.

Saturday's other results saw Shimizu S-Pulse beat Omiya Ardija 1-0 at home, while Gamba Osaka defeated Vissel Kobe 3-2 in a Kansai derby at Expo '70 Stadium on the northern outskirts of Osaka.

Sunday's fixtures sees Urawa Reds attempt to end a disastrous seven-game losing streak at home to Montedio Yamagata, while bottom club Oita Trinita welcome Jubilo Iwata to the Kyushu Oil Dome.

League Cup final a local affair

The 2009 Yamazaki Nabisco League Cup final will be a local affair at the National Stadium in Tokyo, after capital club FC Tokyo booked a showdown with neighbours Kawasaki Frontale.

In the semi-finals FC Tokyo saw off last season's beaten finalists Shimizu S-Pulse 3-2 on aggregate, while Kawasaki beat Kanagawa rivals Yokohama F. Marinos 3-1 on aggregate.

Yokohama had goalkeeper Hiroki Iikura sent off in the second-leg of his team's tie, and Iikura has subsequently been handed a six-match ban after he was alleged to have pushed referee Kenji Ogiya following his dismissal against Frontale.

J-League Results

September 13

Urawa Reds 4, Montedio Yamagata 1
Oita Trinita 2, Jubilo Iwata 1

September 12

Gamba Osaka 3, Vissel Kobe 2
JEF United Chiba 0, Albirex Niigata 1
Kashima Antlers vs Kawasaki Frontale (game abandoned)
Kyoto Sanga 2, FC Tokyo 1
Nagoya Grampus 2, Kashiwa Reysol 3
Sanfrecce Hiroshima 3, Yokohama F Marinos 2

Shimizu S-Pulse 1, Omiya Ardija 0

Previous J-League Results

Rain ruins top-of-the-table clash.

Copyright © Michael Tuckerman & Soccerphile.com

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