INAC Kobe open seven point gap as Beleza held by Kunoichi
INAC Kobe Leonessa 7 - 2 JEF United Ichihara Chiba Ladies
INAC Kobe started with the same eleven as they had done against Sayama today, as visitors JEF United brought in Tezuka Saori and Shimizu Yuka, who had scored JEF's lone goal against INAC in their first meeting, a 3-1 win for INAC Kobe.
It took less than two minutes for Takase Megumi to give the home side the lead, as the INAC team settled into a familiar pattern. Sawa gave a pass out to Kawasumi on the right and her cross into the box was headed towards goal smartly by Goebel-Yanez. Funada could only parry the ball and Takase was quickest to react, scoring her fifteenth of the season.
JEF weren't ready to lie down quite yet though, and in the fifth minute, former INAC player Ogawa took a shot at goal, catching Takenaka Rei off her line, but the ball bounced off the crossbar and was cleared away for the corner. Young Takenaka looked even more uncertain when the ball was swung in from the corner, as she could only punch the ball into the net, Hosokawa Motoyo scoring directly from the corner for her first goal this season to bring joy to the JEF players and fans alike.
INAC reacted by doing what they do best - coming forward in numbers and creating opportunities on both flanks and through the middle. On nine minutes, a ball from Kinga found Takase and her layback for Ji saw the Korean thunder a shot against the crossbar. The pressure was relieved when an offside decision went JEF's way.
Most of the danger was coming through Kawasumi on the right though, and when she beat Tezuka she easily found Ohno on the far side of the box all alone and the captain's side-footed shot found the right corner of the net to restore the lead for INAC within fifteen minutes. Not long after Tanaka Asuna headed goalward, beating Funada but only finding the underside of the crossbar and the ball was cleared.
INAC's pressure was relentless and after Tezuka had given away a free kick just outside the area, Goebel-Yanez was quickest to react to Ji's ball into the area and her header found the corner of the net to underline INAC's dominance in the first quarter of the game. Kawasumi had one for herself when she was again found in space on the right and her early shot from outside the area flew past Funada and into the top left corner. Again Tezuka was at fault, not marking Kawasumi closely and allowing the deadly forward too much time.
After a lull, Takase was again on the score sheet when another attack down the right proved fruitful, this time Goebel-Yanez found her with a ball along the ground and the league's top scorer calmly stroked it home, that goal coming in the 39th minute, and the game was over as a contest before half-time. At the other end though, Takenaka's form will have been a concern for INAC as she flapped at and missed the ball put in from a corner kick following one of JEF's rare forays into the INAC half - fortunately for Tankenaka the shot went wide.
INAC brought in Takara at half-time, replacing Kai. Almost immediately from the kick off JEF scored to make it 5-2. Hosokawa showed great determination in winning the ball and it fell kindly for Ogawa to take control and power the shot past Takenaka, a deserved reward for a tireless performance, and her first goal of her first season in JEF colours.
INAC were still playing well, but seemed to have lost much of their cutting edge, while JEF United were starting to play some good football in midfield, and on the left wing Hosokawa certainly had the beating of Takara. Nakajima replaced Goebel-Yanez in the INAC midfield in the 60th minute, as they looked to restore control of the middle of the park.
Minamiyama also came into midfield in the 75th minute, replacing Ji, as JEF continued to control the game and deny INAC scoring opportunities. One of their best chances fell to Moros as Funada again parried a Kawasumi cross, but the ball sailed well over the bar.
Finally in the 83rd minute INAC scored again, Takase recording her third hat-trick after Sawa's header was saved by Funada, with Kawasumi again the provider on the right. Moments later Takase had a chance for a fourth when she used her strength to win the ball from the startled Kawamura and although her shot was saved Ohno was on hand to put home the loose ball.
As time ran out, JEF introduced Sakuramoto Naoko, Shimada Ayako and Kawamura Noriko into the game for a run out, and there was never going to be enough time for them to make any impact on the result. INAC next play the Kunoichi, and JEF will look for a win against Fukuoka at home next weekend.
INAC Kobe Leonessa:
Takenaka Rei, Kinga Yukari, Kai Junko, Tanaka Asuna, Rebecca Moros, Ji So-Yun, Sawa Homare, Ohno Shinobu (capt), Kawasumi Nahomi, Beverly Goebel-Yanez, Takase Megumi
Subs: Takara Ryoko (Kai Junko, HT), Nakajima Emi (Beverly Goebel-Yanez, 60 mins), Minamiyama Chiaki (Ji So-Yun, 75 mins)
Unused subs: Tanaka Yoko, Nakada Ayu
Scorers: Takase Megumi (2, 39, 83 mins), Ohno Shinobu (14, 84 mins), Beverly Goebel-Yanez (23 mins), Kawasumi Nahomi (27 mins)
Booked: Sawa Homare
JEF United Ichihara Chiba Ladies:
Funada Mayu, Takahashi Sachie, Kawamura Mariko, Tezuka Saori, Yamamoto Naomi, Hosokawa Motoyo, Hosaka Nodoka, Yanai Rina, Shimizu Yuka (capt), Fukasawa Risa, Ogawa Shiho
Subs: Sakuramoto Naoko (Yamamoto Naomi, 90 mins), Shimada Ayako (Yanai Rina, 90 mins), Kawamura Noriko (Shimizu Yuka, 90 mins)
Unused subs: Nemoto Mio, Yonemoto Nao
Scorers: Hosokawa Motoyo (6 mins), Ogawa Shiho (46 mins)
Booked: Tezuka Saori, Yamamoto Naomi
NTV Beleza 1 - 1 Iga FC Kunoichi
Iga had only two shots on goal in this game, but still came away with an excellent draw which diminishes Beleza's chances of winning the league. Nagasato Asano was again on target for the home team, scoring in the 66th minute. A long ball from Kobayashi Yayoi from just inside the Iga half eluded the Kunoichi defence and Nagasato finished well to give Beleza an expected lead.
Iga fought back and with six minutes remaining Kobayashi Makiko equalised. Following a succession of corners the ball was swung in towards the near post by Nakade and Kobayashi just managed to get a touch to guide it past Matsubayashi.
Beleza now need INAC to slip up badly, and their next game away to Niigata must result in a victory to keep their hopes alive. They must also hope that their opponents today give INAC a tough game and can either win or at least hold their illustrious opponents to a draw.
Matsubayashi Miku, Sudo Akiko, Ariyoshi Saori, Kobayashi Misaki, Iwashimizu Azusa (capt), Hara Natsuko, Kobayashi Yayoi, Ito Kanako, Kiryu Nanase, Nagasato Asano, Tanaka Mina
Subs: Nakasato Yu (Kobayashi Yayoi, 82 mins)
Unused subs: Soyama Kanako, Kobayashi Miharu, Doko Mayo, Takahashi Saori
Scorers: Nagasato Asano (66 mins)
Iga FC Kunoichi:
Ono Maya, Yamaguchi Ayako, Miyasako Tamami, Sato Ai, Fujimoto Ayano, Miyamoto Tomomi, Nasu Maiko, Tsutsumi Saki, Kobayashi Makiko (capt), Nakade Hikari, Matsunaga Yoshie
Subs: Sakaguchi Sakie (Tsutsumi Saki, 78 mins)
Unused subs: Kuno Fubuki, Takeda Yuki, Matsunaga Tomoe, Sonomura Nana
Scorers: Kobayashi Makiko (84 mins)
Booked: Miyasako Tamami
Speranza F.C. Osaka Takatsuki 1 - 4 Okayama Yunogo Belle
Belle's hopes of a first top three finish remained on course as they dismantled Takatsuki today, thoroughly outplaying their opponents and outscoring them comfortably. Arimachi scored her fifth of the season to open the scoring early, following a mistake by Takatsuki goalkeeper Suzuki. Nakagawa Chiho scored for the third time in four games to double the lead, volleying home after Matsuoka had hit the crossbar. Nakano Manami made it 3-0 just before half time, though in truth the ball was helped home by one of the Takatsuki defenders.
Matsuda Nozomi reduced the deficit after 58 minutes, but four minutes later Matsuoka Miki had just reward for her hard work as she restored Belle's three goal advantage as she chested down an Arimachi cross before smashing the ball home four her fourth of the season.
Takatsuki now must win against Sayama next weekend to give themselves hope of avoiding the relegation play-off; Belle welcome Urawa who are their challengers for third place.
Speranza F.C. Osaka Takatsuki:
Suzuki Risa, Tsuboi Ayako, Okuda Akiko (capt), Akiba Yumeko, Matsuda Nozomi, Torao Naomi, Itami Emi, Asano Miki, Hamada Haruka, Mok Hyun Su, Maruyama Karina
Subs: Kameoka Natsumi (Mok Hyun Su, 66 mins), Gwon Su Jin (Maruyama Karina, 86 mins), Takahashi Chizuru (Hamada Haruka, 86 mins)
Unused subs: Ueno Yukiko, Matsui Miki
Scorers: Matsuda Nozomi (58 mins)
Okayama Yunogo Belle:
Fukumoto Miho (capt), Yasuda Kuniko, Kado Yuka, Tsuhako Yumiko, Nagamachi Yuri, Takahashi Haruka, Nakano Manami, Nakagawa Chihiro, Miyama Aya, Arimachi Saori, Matsuoka Miki
Subs: Yamaguchi Mami (Nakagawa Chihiro, HT), Yokoyama Kumi (Tsuhako Yumiko, 64 mins), Mizushima Kumi (Arimachi Saori, 80 mins)
Unused subs: Ikegaya Natsumi, Shigemoto Shiho
Scorers: Arimachi Saori (12 mins), Nakagawa Chihiro (30 mins), Nakano Manami (44 mins), Matsuoka Miki (62 mins)
Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies 3 - 4 Albirex Niigata Ladies
Urawa's hopes of a top three finish were dealt a severe blow as the visiting Niigata Ladies shocked them with a surprising 4-3 win, in a game which swung one way and then the other.
Kohata Shiho opened the scoring after ten minutes, with her first goal of the season. Niwata's free kick from the right side of the area was headed home powerfully by the inrushing Kohata, with the Niigata defenders surprised. The equaliser was not long in coming, Kamionobe stealing the ball from the sleeping Urawa defence and finishing the chance off herself and she was involved again just before half-time, when her shot was only parried by Yamago and Hori was close by to strike home.
Four goals in the last eleven minutes saw Urawa equalise twice only to see them concede soon after. Substitute Fujita scored her first this season to start the madness, heading in fellow Under-20 star Shibata's cross following some fine build-up play. Soon after Niigata brought on Kitahara Kana, and just over a minute after coming on she scored with a diving header from a Kodama cross.
Goto Michi got herself in on the act, with a goal three minutes later that the Urawa faithful must have been convinced would be enough to secure a draw. Tsuchihashi provided the cross that Goto headed home splendidly. Kamionobe would have the final say on an excellent day for her though, as she found the net deep in additional time - with Urawa having hit the crossbar - to secure the points for Niigata to underline their qualities. Given two chances to score following a block, she wasn't going to be denied.
Niigata are next at home against Beleza with renewed belief, while Urawa must travel to Okayama to take on Belle needing a win if they are to have any chance of catching their rivals.
Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies:
Yamago Nozomi, Tsuchihashi Yuki, Kohata Shiho, Yano Kyoko (capt), Dozono Ayano, Kishikawa Natsuki, Naomoto Hikaru, Niwata Akiko, Kira Chinatsu, Arakawa Eriko, Goto Michi
Subs: Saito Akane (Dozono Ayano, HT), Shibata Hanae (Kohata Shiho, 64 mins), Fujita Nozomi (Arakawa Eriko, 78 mins)
Unused subs: Ikeda Sakiko, Yanagita Miyuki
Scorers: Kohata Shiho (10 mins), Fujita Nozomi (79 mins), Goto Michi (86 mins)
Albirex Niigata Ladies:
Otomo Maiko (capt), Wakabayashi Minori, Nakamura Kaede, Higashiyama Maiko, Hirai Sakina, Kubota Mayu, Kawamura Yuri, Saito Yuri, Kamionobe Megumi, Yamazaki Marumi, Hori Yoshie
Subs: Toyoda Nayuha (Hori Yoshie, HT), Kodama Keiko (Kubota Mayu, 74 mins), Kitahara Kana (Kawamura Yuri, 82 mins)
Unused subs: Ichitani Tomoko, Yamamoto Arina
Scorers: Kamionobe Megumi (16, 90+2 mins), Hori Yoshie (45 mins), Kitahara Kana (83 mins)
Fukuoka J. Anclas 0 - 1 AS Elfen Sayama FC
A goal two minutes from time may have saved Sayama from relegation worries while condemning Anclas to play in the Challenge League next season. Both sides were evenly matched but Watanabe Ayaka's goal, an extraordinary effort from just outside the centre circle, was the defining moment in this game and possibly each team's season. Anclas have little chance of saving themselves, and must first overcome JEF United away next weekend. Sayama host fellow strugglers Takatsuki.
Fukuoka J. Anclas:
Sawada Norimi, Uchihori Ritsuko (capt), Isokane Midori, Hanada Aiko, Sato Kaede, Doshita Misato, Kawamura Mari, Kiyohara Marie, Tagashira Yoko, Kim Kyoung Sin, Lee Min Sun
Subs: Hirata Hikari (Kim Kyoung Sin, 69 mins)
Unused subs: Yatagai Mikiko, Shibuya Yumiko, Kuzuma Riyo, Fujimoto Yuki
AS Elfen Sayama FC:
Kobayashi Maiko, Shibata Satomi, Segi Aiki, Takahashi Yuko, Akitaya Misato, Sawada Yuka, Azami Rie, Watanabe Ayaka, Kobayashi Natsumi, Suzuki Kaoruko, Muraoka Natsuki (capt)
Subs: Uchida Saki (Sawada Yuka, 69 mins), Kawai Nayo (Suzuki Kaoruko, 77 mins), Saito Yuri (Watanabe Ayaka, 90+2 mins)
Unused subs: Arima Shizuka, Kiyohara Yuuko
Scorers: Watanabe Ayaka (88 mins)