2015/8/16 Vissel Kobe 2-0 Kawasaki Frontale
The writing seemed on the wall for Kawasaki Frontale from the very first exchanges in this match as Vissel Kobe took the game to their visitors right from the start. Unchanged, despite a loss in their last match, Ryota Morioka should have opened the scoring within 90 seconds of the opening whistle, when Leandro chased down a backpass and forced the keeper into a clearance that fell to Vissel's number 10 with the goalkeeper stranded.The first time shot sailed over the bar, but the warning bells were sounding early in the Frontale defence! Three minutes later Morioka was forcing the keeper into a save from 30 yards and it just seemed a matter of time before the home team opened the scoring.
And then the game seemed to turn for a few minutes as Elsinho, Yoshito Okubo and Ryota Oshima all had shots on goal in quick succession. But the tide soon returned to its natural flow and Kazuma Watanabe had the ball in the net, but, despite the crowd - and the stadium sound system - going ballistic, the referee had disallowed the goal for handball!
Vissel finally got the goal that had been coming all half just four minutes before the break, Leandro heading home a Jung Woo-Young corner and it was 1-0 at half time.
As the second period progressed Frontale saw Shogo Taniguchi hit the bar. heading a free kick from distance, although Kaito Yamamoto seemed to have it covered, while Kenyu Sugimoto completely mis-cued a wide open chance after a Kengo Nakamura pass had created the space.
Leandro blasted a bouncing ball against the bar with less than ten minutes left as Frontale looked for an equaliser at the other end and, finally, just to make sure, Kazuma Watanabe did double the home team's lead with seven minutes to go and the points were Vissel's!
Team - Yamamoto, Iwanami, Jung, Sho.Takahashi, Mihara (Tanaka, 88), Morioka, Shu.Takahashi, Soma, Ishizu (Masuyama, 87), Leandro, Watanabe