2018/11/10 Vissel Kobe 0-0 Sagan Tosue
Vissel Kobe 0-0 Sagan Tosue
The long-promoted match-up of Andres Iniesta with fellow Spaniard, Sagan Tosu's Fernando Torres finally came to pass, with the two teams promoting the "collaboration" of the two in this J1 meeting, and, in the end the teams came out level, while Iniesta came out far above his compatriot in the personal battle. Torres was ineffective in this match, thanks to the careful policing of Ahmed Yasser and Leo Osaka in the Vissel defence and was substituted with 20 minutes to go in the game. The statistics showed just four goal attempts for the away team, who somehow came out of this match with a point.
The physical play of Tosu was noticeable from the start as they kicked and pulled their way into the game with numerous fouls all over the field, yet, when a Vissel player fouled a Tosu player the away bench cleared on more than one occasion to berate the referee and goad the home players. It was an unpleasant sight and the referee was extremely lenient with both the on-field players and the bench.
On the footballing side Andres Iniesta showed some of his magic to create space at times in the 1st half, a header and a shot from him and a right-footed grass-cutter from Lukas Podolski was as much as we saw as Vissel held the ball but had no finishing touch.
The 2nd half began a little faster with Kyogo Furuhashi getting the first chance of the second period as he held off the challenge of one defender and then turned inside to outfox another, but his shot was just over. Podolski then hit a post with a piledriver that rebounded clear off the back of the lucky 'keeper as Tosu somehow managed to keep the scores level. And level they stayed as neither team could break the deadlock, the final say going to Iniesta as he drove a 25 yard shot over the var as the final whistle sounded.
Team - Maekawa, Fujitani, Osaki, Yasser, Theertahon, Fujita, Inoha (Matsushita, 78), Mita, Podolski, Iniesta, Furuhashi (Wellington, 76)