2018/11/24 Shimizu S-Pulse 3-3 Vissel Kobe
Shimizu S-Pulse 3-3 Vissel Kobe
A game filled with goals and incident, that also the opposition goalkeeper scoring an equaliser in the 14th minute of additional time! What a game the fans saw as Vissel took the play to their hosts with Lukas Podolski and Andres Iniesta playing high up the field, and Kyogo Furuhashi in the middle to take the chances supplied.
The 4-3-3 formation that had recently been used continued this weekend, as Masahiko Inoha started his third game in-a-row, after not getting in the 1st XI since March. Daiki Miya was given a start at centre back alongside Leo Osaki, with Theerathon and Masatoshi Mihara tasked with running the sides of the field. First blood almost went to Vissel Kobe as early as the 8th minute as a low left wing cross from Iniesta found the in-rushing Inoha, but his first-time shot hit the legs of the unknowing 'keeper and the scores remained level.
The next chance decent chance to fall to the away team came as a long cross-field ball from Podolski found Theerathon, with the Thai star one-touching the ball into the path of Hirotaka Mita who saw his shot saved as Yuji Rokutan came to his team's rescue again. Moments later, though, saw Naoyuki Fujita make no mistake as he ran on to a superb lofted pass from Iniesta to blast home with his left foot to give Vissel a well deserved lead.
By half time Vissel could have had the points sewn up but allowed S-Pulse back into the game when Osaki gave the ball away deep in his own half, and the away team swiftly passed their way forward to see Yosuke Kawai slide home the equaliser to bring the teams level at the break.
Vissel were deservedly ahead again six minutes after the restart when a clever flick from Inoha brought him space on the left with the return ball, his cross being met by Furuhashi. The diminutive striker got in between three defenders to nod the ball over the 'keeper to make it 2-1 and leave Ko Matsubara red-faced, beaten by 170 cm of talent!
Vissel continued to own the game and pass the ball around looking for space and it was Mita who finally got his goal in the 62nd minute to give his team a 3-1 lead, cleverly lobbing the goalkeeper from the left corner of the area after seeing him off his line.
The away team went down to 10 men with seven minutes to go when Fujita - trying to break through the middle to get on the end of a counter attack - was pushed and pulled in the middle of the field as he sprinted forward. The hero became the villain as the goalscorer saw a second yellow card for tapping at the ankles of his attacker, and so the action began in earnest. With three minutes - of the normal 90 - to go, a Chong Tese cross from the right was headed home by Douglas to bring the home team back in it with moments to go. Or so we all thought!
To cut a long added time story short, Wellington came onto the field of play in the 90th minute and saw two yellow cards in additional time. He eventually left the field of play in the 18th minute of additional time, four minutes after S-Pulse goalkeeper Rokutan had scored the equaliser from a corner that came around SIX minutes of PLAYING time (not wasted, ball out-of-play time) AFTER the four announced additional times minutes had been played. Two injuries stoppages, a red card for Wellington, a goal from a 'keeper, Vissel ending the game with eight men (Wataru Hashimoto also off the field after a clash of heads) a riot that saw the entire S-Pulse squad (not just the bench!) pitch-side - and some of them ON the field - and Lukas Podolski in the off-pitch melee. Suffice to say that there will be more fallout from this game than just a one-match ban for Wellington. The game will be remembered for the late antics and trial by short clips on social media. Hopefully J.League will see more and judge accordingly.
Team - Maekawa, Mihara, Osaki, Miya (Nasu, 88), Theerathon (Hashimoto, 67), Mita, Inoha, Fujita, Podolski, Furuhashi (Wellington, 90), Iniesta
Goals - Naoyuki FUJITA (26'), Kyogo FURUHASHI(52'), Hirotaka MITA(62')