JEF United Ichihara Chiba Ladies 3 - 4 Okayama Yunogo Belle
A remarkable comeback by Okayama Yunogo Belle coupled with a loss for Urawa has given renewed hope to their faithful that they can win the Nadeshiko League for the first time this season. JEF United's chances have now all but evaporated.
Ikadai Risa scored the opening goal after twelve minutes, and with Sugasawa Yuika scoring her nineteenth of the season just before half-time, the home side seemed set for victory. This scenario became even more likely with the third for JEF United, an own goal seven minutes into the second half seemingly ending the game as a contest.
Belle's recovery began with thirty-one minutes remaining, a penalty kick scored by Miyama Aya reducing the arrears. Ten minutes later Arimachi Saori showing tremendous persistance after she fell in the penalty area to get back up and finish well past Yamane. With eight minutes remaining Belle were level, this time the goal coming from Takahashi Sachie, who joined the team just this season from JEF United. She headed home Miyama's free kick and Belle's hard work was rewarded with at least a point.
Belle were not content to hang on to take home just the one point and five minutes into additional time Arimachi scored her second of the game to leave her side just one point behind Urawa. From a wonderful through pass from Nakano Manami Arimachi kept her composure to round Yamane and win the game with the final kick of the game.
After the international break Belle visit Kobe on Monday, November 3rd to take on the champions again in a very short space of time; JEF United make the short journey to Urawa to face the leaders on the previous Saturday.
JEF United Ichihara Chiba Ladies:
Yamane Erina, Wakabayashi Minori, Sakuramoto Naoko (capt), Oya Madoka, Ueno Saki, Anzai Yuka, Setoguchi Kozue, Kawamura Mari, Fukasawa Risa, Ikadai Risa, Sugasawa Yuika
Subs: Kamogawa Miho (Ikadai Risa, 65 mins)
Unused subs: Nemoto Mio, Tsurumi Ayaka, Chino Shoko, Matsuura Nagisa, Hosaka Nodoka, Shimada Ayako
Scorers: Ikadai Risa (12 mins), Sugasawa Yuika (43 mins), Own Goal (52 mins)
Okayama Yunogo Belle:
Fukumoto Miho (capt), Kado Yuka, Kitaura Miho, Mizushima Kumi, Takahashi Sachie, Kuzuma Riyo, Nakano Manami, Miyama Aya, Asano Miki, Arimachi Saori, Matsuoka Miki
Subs: Fushiki Kaho (Kuzuma Riyo, HT)
Unused subs: Kawano Saki, Nakada Maiko, Tanaka Mayu
Scorers: Miyama Aya (59 mins), Arimachi Saori (69, 90+5 mins), Takahashi Sachie (82 mins)
Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies 1 - 2 Nippon TV Beleza
Beleza had been humbled by Urawa early in the Exciting Series by a three goal defeat, and could not possibly allow another repeat performance. Five points behind with five games to go, another loss would have put them eight behind and with little or no chance of a thirteenth title. Urawa were in a buoyant and confident mood having won their previous four consecutive games and a win would keep them four points ahead at the top of the table.
Kishikawa Natsuki gave Urawa the opening goal they craved after twenty minutes. A free kick was knocked in by Dozono Ayano, and with the Beleza defence uncomfortble, Kato Chika's attempt was deflected to Kishikawa who scored from close range to set up what looked like another Urawa triumph.
Beleza kept at it, refused to allow Urawa to get away from them and equalised on the hour mark, with Hara Natsuko scoring her very first goal of the season bringing them level. Hasegawa's cross from the left was met by Wada Naoko, but she stumbled and Hara was there to poke home unhindered.
With six minutes remaining Beleza found the winner to make it extremely tight at the top. Hara was the supplier this time, working a short corner with Momiki Yuka before beating two defenders to cross for Kinoshita Shiori to volley home - Kinoshita also scoring her first goal this season.
Beleza next host Niigata, who are yet to win a game this season and who looked lacklustre against INAC Kobe. Urawa look to get back on track at home to JEF United, the highest scoring team in the Exciting Series.
Urawa Red Diamonds Ladies:
Hirao Chika, Dozono Ayano, Norimatsu Ruka, Kohata Shiho, Wada Naoko, Shibata Hanae, Naomoto Hikaru, Kishikawa Natsuki, Kato Chika, Kira Chinatsu, Goto Michi (capt)
Subs: Usui Rie (Wada Naoko, 72 mins), Seike Kiko (Kira Chinatsu, 72 mins), Otaki Ami (Kato Chika, 80 mins)
Unused subs: Ikeda Sakiko, Sakamoto Riho, Nagano Fuka, Saito Akane
Scorers: Kishikawa Natsuki (20 mins)
Nippon TV Beleza:
Soyama Kanako, Shimizu Risa, Iwashimizu Azusa (capt), Kinoshita Shiori, Ariyoshi Saori, Sakaguchi Mizuho, Hara Natsuko, Sumida Rin, Momiki Yuka, Hasegawa Yui, Yamaguchi Mami
Subs: Kiryu Nanase (Yamaguchi Mami, 71 mins), Kobayashi Yayoi (Momiki Yuka, 90 mins)
Unused subs: Yamashita Ayaka, Doko Mayo, Kobayashi Miharu, Nakasato Yu, Tanaka Mina
Scorers: Hara Natsuko (60 mins), Kinoshita Shiori (84 mins)
Booked: Iwashimizu Azusa
INAC Kobe Leonessa 0 - 0 Albirex Niigata Ladies
INAC Kobe's caretaker manager Mori Ryota took charge of his first Nadeshiko League match against a team which INAC Kobe have done very well this year, winning all three previous meetings. Chelsea Stewart was still missing from the squad through injury, so INAC Kobe lined up with familiar names. Niigata brought McCarty back into their starting eleven, and with JFA Academy loanee Kojima Miku in defence as they looked for their first win of the Exciting Series.
Neither side looked particularly impressive in the first half, with only a few half-chances falling at either end. Indeed both sets of players gave the impression that they had little to play for.
Tiffany McCarty hit the post in the opening moments of the second half and Oishi Sayaka has a lofted shot tipped just over the bar. McCarty was clean through in the 53rd minute but shot unconvincingly shot straight at Kaihori. Moments later Oishi Sayaka was taken off injured and was replaced by Sayama Momoko. Niigata continued to look throughout the second half like they were the only team really interested in winning the game, and they went close on a number of occasions. Sawa hit the bar in additional time, but INAC Kobe were extremely disappointing in their lack of application.
Despite Urawa's loss, neither side is remotely in contention for the title and look as if they're happy to play the season out. Niigata next play away to Beleza with INAC Kobe at home to Belle.
INAC Kobe Leonessa:
Kaihori Ayumi, Kai Junko, Isokane Midori, Miyake Shiori, Watanabe Ayaka, Beverly Goebel-Yanez, Sawa Homare, Minamiyama Chiaki, Kawasumi Nahomi, Takase Megumi (capt), Masuya Rika
Subs: Nakada Ayu (Masuya Rika, 63 mins), Tanaka Yoko (Minamiyama Chiaki, 77 mins)
Unused subs: Takenaka Rei, Yamada Maho, Noguchi Ayaka, Ito Miki, Kyokawa Mai
Albirex Niigata Ladies:
Ichitani Tomoko, Kojima Miku, Kitahara Kana, Yamamoto Arina, Obara Yuria, Takahashi Haruka, Kamionobe Megumi (capt), Sakaguchi Moeno, Oishi Sayaka, Saeki Aya, Tiffany McCarty
Subs: Sayama Momoko (Oishi Sayaka, 57 mins), Yamada Shoko (Kojima Miku, 90+1 mins)
Unused subs: Koganemaru Sachie, Sekura Haruhi
Vegalta Sendai Ladies 3 - 2 AS Elfen Saitama
Another drizzly day in Sendai was livened up by an end-to-end encounter at the Yurtec Stadium which saw four goals in nine second-half minutes to set up an exciting finish.
Scoreless after the first half, the home side took the lead on the hour mark, Uetsuji Yumi scoring direct from a corner. Nakano Rino scored her second in two games within a few seconds of the restart, following good work by Azami down the right.
A few minutes later and Saitama were in the lead, Sugiyama Takako picking up a loose Vegalta ball to poke home, though Saitama too were to lose the lead in short time, Hamada Haruka striking a fine shot home from outside the area with another loose defensive pass playing its part.
Vegalta Sendai eventually won the game and finished top of the Lower Section with a goal late in additional time. A determined run down the left by Hamada resulted in her crossing low across the face of goal. Missing everyone, the ball found its way to Nohara who turned it back for Kakazu to score from close range.
Vegalta finish seventh, Saitama eighth. Both sides now have a long rest until their participation in the Empress' Cup.
Vegalta Sendai Ladies:
Brittany Cameron, Sakai Yuki, Yamamoto Risa, Osafune Kana, Sameshima Aya, Takara Ryoko, Kawamura Yuri, Uetsuji Yumi (capt), Kakazu Asuka, Hamada Haruka, Ono Hitomi
Subs: Inoue Ayaka (Ono Hitomi, 74 mins), Tahara Nozomi (Takara Ryoko, 85 mins)
Unused subs: Saita Yuki, Sasaki Mayu, Ideue Asako, Irie Miki, Kawashima Haruna
Scorers: Uetsuji Yumi (60 mins), Hamada Haruka (69 mins), Kakazu Asuka (90+2 mins)
AS Elfen Saitama:
Yamago Nozomi (capt), Akitaya Misato, Takahashi Yuko, Saito Natsumi, Takeyama Yuko, Nakano Rino, Ito Kanako, Uchida Saki, Azami Rie, Arakawa Eriko, Suzuki Kaoruko
Subs: Sugiyama Takako (Suzuki Kaoruko, 59 mins)
Unused subs: Funada Mayu, Takeda Arisa, Saito Yuri, Takahashi Kaho
Scorers: Nakano Rino (61 mins), Sugiyama Takako (67 mins)
Iga FC Kunoichi 2 - 0 FC Kibikokusaidaigaku Charme
For both sides this game was meaningless in terms of their final positions this year, with both looking towards more important games to come: play-offs to survive for Iga, the defence of the inter-collegiate title for Kibi.
Iga won with a goal in either half, Haji Madoka with her second in two games - the only goals she has scored this year - and Ogawa Shiho scored her fifth of the year, for her also the second in two games.
Kibi have a long rest now until the Empress' Cup games. Iga will find out soon whether they play Nittaidai or Nojima.
Iga FC Kunoichi:
Kuno Fubuki, Yamaguchi Ayako, Miyasako Tamami, Nasu Maiko (capt), Ohashi Mio, Matsunaga Tomoe, Sugita Ami, Haji Madoka, Tsutsumi Saki, Matsunaga Yoshie, Kristie Mewis
Subs: Ogawa Shiho (Haji Madoka, 69 mins), Noichi Aya (Yamaguchi Ayako, 73 mins), Kiyohara Marie (Tsutsumi Saki, 84 mins)
Unused subs: Sawada Norimi, Michikura Hiroko, Sakumoto Fumika, Sonomura Nana
Scorers: Haji Madoka (28 mins), Ogawa Shiho (71 mins)
FC Kibikokusaidaigaku Charme:
Isashi Kaede, Yoshitake Manami, Noma Fumika (capt), Mukai Satsuki, Eguchi Mika, Watanabe Kazumi, Komatsu Mina, Kanbara Misaki, Kurakazu Shiho, Nishikawa Asuka, Tachibana Rei
Subs: Hamamoto Marin (Tachibana Rei, 42 mins), Takano Saki (Watanabe Kazumi, HT), Tajima Mitsuyo (Kurakazu Shiho, 82 mins)
Unused subs: Morimoto Kiyo, Takahashi Chiho, Miyake Ayumi, Takatsuka Ayane