INAC Kobe Leonessa 4 - 0 Fukuoka J. Anclas
INAC Kobe retained youngster Takenaka Rei in goal for what was expected to be a straightforward win over bottom side Anclas in Hiroshima today. Beverly Goebel-Yanez came into the starting lineup, while Korean Ji So-Yun dropped to the bench. Anclas included for the second time their newly arrived Korean forwards, Kim and Lee. Kuzuma Riyo and Doshita Misato came into the side having missed the last game.
Ohno Shinobu had the first chance to shoot in the third minute, volleying wide of the post. Both sides were finding it hard to build a rhythm, especially as the pitch looked to be in poor condition. In the eleventh minute a short-corner worked cleverly between Ohno and Kawasumi ended with goalkeeper Sawada catching a Minamiyama header. Another short corner worked between the two resulted in Minamiyama getting another chance, this time knocking the ball wide as INAC started to create chances.
In the eighteenth minute Anclas had their first shot on target from Shibuya, though Takenaka was comfortable in catching it. Her opposite number was also looking quite confident and composed.
Goebel-Yanez had the most clear-cut chance when Ohno gave her a perfect ball just to the left of goal but her shot lacked accuracy and went wide of the right post. Ohno then picked up the ball herself moments later but was driven wide and shot into the side netting.
Ohno was sent clear in the 34th minute when a long ball from Minamiyama found her clear through on goal but her careful shot hit the outside of the post and went wide. This came moments are Lee showed her potential at the other end, using her speed and guile to carve open a chance for Anclas.
Finally in the 42nd minute Ohno got her reward for her perseverance as she first beat two players on the edge of the area. The ball came loose after Isokane's clearance was blocked against Ohno. Kawasumi was quickest to react and her backheel found Ohno again who danced around the defence and sidefooted home from close range. INAC will have found great relief in scoring before half-time as they hadn't looked nearly as sharp as usual.
Starting the second half, Anclas must have felt there was still something in the game for them, but having produced some nice football to create a good chance at one end, they immediately fell two behind to a strike from Goebel-Yanez in the 47th minute, who was sent clear by a wonderful pass from Kinga.
INAC Kobe now started to play much more fluidly and were starting to control the game in midfield, creating all of the goal scoring chances. Kawasumi, Ohno and Goebel-Yanez were those making most of the strikes.
Exciting youngster Hirata Hikari came on for Anclas on the hour mark and shortly after Nakajima replaced Minamiyama for INAC. Hirata got stuck in and caused Takase some problems on the right, but soon after Takase found some room and her long range shot sailed over Sawada and into the net for her eleventh of the season.
Moments after the third goal, U-20 World Cup sensation Tanaka Yoko was introduced for her first league appearance since the opening game. She replaced Takase in the 69th minute. Two minutes later Yatagai replaced Sato for Anclas.
Nakajima was fouled by Isokane in the box in the 78th minute and Ohno stepped up to take the penalty, and she sent Sawada the wrong way to make the score line very comfortable.
Entering the last ten minutes the game began to peter out, with neither side making any serious attempt at attacking, but rather just playing the ball around and hoping for openings to present themselves. A nice attempt by Tanaka Yoko from outside the area, with the goalkeeper rushing out, just went the wrong side of the right post. This came just after Shimizu made her first appearance, replacing Ohno with four minutes to go.
Anclas look a much improved side, and their two hardest games of the run-in have come at a good time for them. They were never going to beat Beleza and INAC, and the two games have allowed their new Korean forwards to blend into the team well. Their goal will be to reach eighth in the table and safety, and they appear now to have an increased chance of reaching that goal. INAC remain comfortably on top of the table, but will be disappointed in their attitude in the first half.
INAC Kobe Leonessa:
Takenaka Rei, Kinga Yukari, Kai Junko, Tanaka Asuna, Rebecca Moros, Ohno Shinobu (capt), Minamiyama Chiaki, Sawa Homare, Kawasumi Nahomi, Beverly Goebel-Yanez, Takase Megumi
Subs: Nakajima Emi (Minamiyama Chiaki, 62 mins), Tanaka Yoko (Takase Megumi, 69 mins), Shimizu Akane (Ohno Shinobu, 86 mins)
Unused subs: Kaihori Ayumi, Ji So-Yun
Scorers: Ohno Shinobu (42, 78 mins (pen) ), Beverly Goebel-Yanez (47 mins), Takase Megumi (66 mins)
Fukuoka J. Anclas:
Sawada Norimi, Uchihori Ritsuko (capt), Hanada Aiko, Isokane Midori, Sato Kaede, Kuzuma Riyo, Kawamura Mari, Doshita Misato, Shibuya Yumiko, Kim Kyoung Sin, Lee Min Sun
Subs: Hirata Hikari (Kuzuma Riyo, 61 mins), Yatagai Mikiko (Sato Kaede, 71 mins), Fujimoto Yuki (Kim Kyoung Sin, 80 mins)
Unused subs: Yanagita Shiori, Tagashira Yoko
Okayama Yunogo Belle 2 - 1 Iga FC Kunoichi
In their first meeting this season, Belle had travelled to Iga and completely dominated them, winning by five goals to nil. On that occasion an early Mizushima goal had settled Belle and they were able to get into their rhythm on the wet pitch. Belle won again today at home, but for all their dominance it took until the 73rd minute for them to get the opening goal. Kado Yuka, who had started the move by snuffing out an Iga attack, continued forward and when the ball fell to her again, she crossed into the box and found Nakagawa Chihiro between two defenders, and she stretched to put away her second goal of the season, and first since the opening day.
In the 78th minute Nakagawa was replaced by Yamaguchi Mami, making her first home appearance since returning to Japan from Sweden. Within ten minutes she had sealed the game for Belle, scoring in a very similar fashion to Nakagawa. Nakano Manami found Miyama running into space down the right and her cross into the box was poked home by Yamaguchi, the ball just having enough momentum to cross the line.
Nasu Maiko pulled a goal back deep in additional time for the Kunoichi when she converted a Nakade corner, the ball travelling through a crowd of both attackers and defenders untouched. Iga next play Urawa at home hoping to open a gap on the teams below them; Belle travel the considerable distance to Niigata.
Okayama Yunogo Belle:
Fukumoto Miho (capt), Yasuda Kuniko, Kado Yuka, Sakai Nozomi, Nagamachi Yuri, Takahashi Haruka, Nakano Manami, Nakagawa Chihiro, Miyama Aya, Arimachi Saori, Matsuoka Miki
Subs: Yamaguchi Mami (Nakagawa Chihiro, 78 mins)
Unused subs: Ikegaya Natsumi, Shigemoto Shiho, Mizushima Kumi, Yokoyama Kumi
Scorers: Nakagawa Chihiro (73 mins), Yamaguchi Mami (88 mins)
Iga FC Kunoichi:
Ono Maya, Miyasako Tamami, Ono Suzuka (capt), Sato Ai, Yamaguchi Ayako, Nasu Maiko, Miyamoto Tomomi, Kobayashi Makiko, Tsutsumi Saki, Matsunaga Yoshie, Nakade Hikari
Subs: Sonomura Nana (Matsunaga Yoshie, 85 mins), Fujimoto Ayano (Sato Ai, 90 mins), Noichi Aya (Tsutsumi Saki, 90+1 mins)
Unused subs: Kuno Fubuki, Matsunaga Tomoe
Scorers: Nasu Maiko (90+3 mins)
Speranza F.C. Osaka Takatsuki 2 - 4 Albirex Niigata Ladies
Relegation-threatened Takatsuki were given hope in the fifteenth minute as star striker Maruyama scored her first goal of this season. Niigata equalised through Yamazaki before the half-hour, and she was to get another after seventy minutes, again cancelling out a Takatsuki strike, another first goal of the season for a Takatsuki player, Asano Miki.
Any hope the home side of recording even a draw were banished when two Niigata goals in the last two minutes finished them off, Hori and Kamionobe with the strikes for Niigata to keep them comfortably in mid-table.
Takatsuki next play Anclas in a very important match at the bottom, while Niigata host high-flying Belle.
Speranza F.C. Osaka Takatsuki:
Ueno Yukiko, Torao Naomi, Okuda Akiko (capt), Akiba Yumeko, Matsuda Nozomi, Tsuboi Ayako, Kameoka Natsumi, Itami Emi, Hamada Haruka, Asano Miki, Maruyama Karina
Subs: Takahashi Chizuru (Maruyama Karina, 60 mins), Shimamura Yuko (Kameoka Natsumi, 77 mins), Hirano Satoko (Asano Miki, 83 mins)
Unused subs: Nakamura Saki, Matsui Miki
Scorers: Maruyama Karina (15 mins), Asano Miki (56 mins)
Albirex Niigata Ladies:
Otomo Maiko (capt), Wakabayashi Minori, Nakamura Kaede, Higashiyama Maiko, Hirai Sakina, Kodama Keiko, Saito Yuri, Yamamoto Arina, Kamionobe Megumi, Yamazaki Marumi, Hori Yoshie
Subs: Kitahara Kana (Yamamoto Arina, 62 mins), Nakamura Saki (Kodama Keiko, 62 mins), Nakaoka Maiko (Kamionobe Megumi, 90+1 mins)
Unused subs: Suwa Erina, Ichitani Tomoko
Scorers: Yamazaki Marumi (29, 70 mins), Hori Yoshie (77 mins), Kamionobe Megumi (86 mins)
AS Elfen Sayama FC 0 - 3 NTV Beleza
Kobayashi Miharu made her first full start for Beleza since the second game of the season, as she replaced sister Misaki in defence. Sawada Yuka and Saito Yuri both returned to the Sayama side, having both missed the previous game.
Neither Beleza nor Sayama produced very many chances in the first half, which will have delighted the home side as they looked for the cushion of an extra point in staying clear of relegation worries. However everything was to change in the early stages of the second half. From a free kick deep in their own territory, the ball was played quickly down the right, Kobayashi Yayoi found Ito Kanako on the right wing and her inswinging cross and Sakaguchi Mizuho stretched out her left leg to connect and score the goal, just her second of the season.
Beleza were emboldened by the goal and pushed forward much more in the second half. Just seven minutes later it was top scorer Nagasato Asano getting on the end of an Ito cross, this time from a free kick just by the corner flag. Nagasato was too powerful for the opposition as she rose to head home at the near post.
Ito's day got better fifteen minutes later when she scored one for herself. With tremendous dead-ball expertise she curled a free-kick from just outside the area - and almost dead centre in front of goal - right into the top left-hand corner of the net well out of the reach of Kobayashi in goal.
Beleza next travel to play JEF United hopeful of another win to keep them in touch with leaders INAC, are away to Sayama. Their last meeting was an entertaining 3-2 victory for INAC. Sayama will hope to go one better next time.
AS Elfen Sayama FC:
Kobayashi Maiko, Segi Aiki, Shibata Satomi, Takahashi Yuko, Akitaya Misato, Azami Rie, Sawada Yuka, Kobayashi Natsumi, Saito Yuri, Watanabe Ayaka, Muraoka Natsuki (capt)
Subs: Hagiwara Aimi (Kobayashi Natsumi, 51 mins), Suzuki Kaoruko (Akitaya Misato, 67 mins), Uchida Saki (Sawada Yuka, 81 mins)
Unused subs: Arima Shizuka, Kawai Nayo
Matsubayashi Miku, Kobayashi Miharu, Sudo Akiko, Ariyoshi Saori, Iwashimizu Azusa (capt), Hara Natsuko, Ito Kanako, Kiryu Nanase, Sakaguchi Mizuho, Kobayashi Yayoi, Nagasato Asano
Subs: Tanaka Mina (Kobayashi Yayoi, 74 mins)
Unused subs: Kobayashi Shiori, Kobayashi Misaki, Doko Mayo, Nakasato Yu
Scorers: Sakaguchi Mizuho (49 mins), Nagasato Asano (56 mins), Ito Kanako (71 mins)
Booked: Sakaguchi Mizuho
Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies 2 - 0 JEF United Ichihara Chiba Ladies
On a very wet pitch, Urawa won again today to keep up the pressure on the top three, though the result will have been disappointing for JEF United, as they would have hoped to have been able to match their drawn game at home early in the season.
Yanagita Miyuki and Naomoto Hikaru, fresh from impressing at the Under-20 World Cup, started for Urawa, while JEF introduced Anzai Yuka, some three weeks before her 16th birthday, as well as regular Tezuka Saori who missed the previous two games.
Urawa were completely dominant in the first half, restricting JEF to just three chances, those coming from Ikadai and Hosoka. Goto Michi was making herself busy at the other end, and in the 34th minute she got her reward with her third goal in as many games. Patient build-up play by Urawa down the right paid off as Niwata's cross was knocked down by Kira to Goto, and she struck a thunderous left-footed shot past Funada from outside the area to great acclaim to the drenched crowd.
If JEF United had felt dominated in the first half, the second was even more miserable for them, as Urawa took complete control of the game, and just six minutes in captain Arakawa Eriko scored her fifth this year to end the game as a contest. Goto took control near the half-way line and holding off a JEF defender well, was relieved by Yanagita who sent a first time ball through the defence, finding Arakawa one-on-one with Funada and the sixteen-year veteran had no problems in finding the corner of the net with the goalkeeper well beaten.
Urawa finished the game with sixteen shots at goal, compared with just four for JEF. Despite just winning by two goals, the difference in class was clear, and the Chiba side find themselves slipping three points behind Niigata and will hope to get a result against Beleza, but that looks like being an even more difficult game, especially as the first game between these sides ended in an emphatic 4-0 loss for JEF. Meanwhile Urawa take on Iga in a repeat of another game that they drew when expected to win, and they will need to do so if they wish to retain a chance of a top three finish.
Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies:
Yamago Nozomi, Saito Akane, Kishikawa Natsuki, Kohata Shiho, Dozono Ayano, Yanagita Miyuki, Naomoto Hikaru, Niwata Akiko, Kira Chinatsu, Arakawa Eriko (capt), Goto Michi
Subs: Shibata Hanae (Yanagita Miyuki, 61 mins), Wada Naoko (Saito Akane, 80 mins), Yasuda Yuki (Arakawa Eriko, 87 mins)
Unused subs: Ikeda Sakiko, Sakamoto Riho
Scorers: Goto Michi (34 mins), Arakawa Eriko (51 mins)
JEF United Ichihara Chiba Ladies:
Funada Mayu, Takahashi Sachie, Kawamura Mariko, Tezuka Saori, Yasuda Saki, Ikadai Risa, Hosaka Nodoka, Yanai Rina, Anzai Yuka, Fukasawa Risa (capt), Ogawa Shiho
Subs: Hosokawa Motoyo (Yasuda Saki, 63 mins), Kawamura Noriko (Ikadai Risa, 76 mins), Shimizu Yuka (Ogawa Shiho, 76 mins)
Unused subs: Sakuramoto Naoko, Yamamoto Naomi