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Monday, 8 June 2009

NC: Johnsen and Co Knock Vissel Out

Kobe mode it official on Sunday, they don't like crumbs and are not interested in the Nabisco Cup, thank you very much.

Despite fielding what in theory was a strongish team, despite very little chance of making the next stage, Kobe put in a half-hearted performance against Shimizu. It is hard to see why they did not use the opportunity to try out some of their promising youngsters, who would at least have been motivated to try and catch the manger's eye.

Kobe got off to a flying start, Mogi winning a penalty after 45 seconds from a rash challenge, and Marcel squeezing home the kick from the spot. However, that was about all the threat the team managed until they found themselves a goal behind with 15 minutes to go. Both teams were pretty ineffective in the first half, and only Hara's equalizer (rifled in from a tight angle) enlivened proceedings after the excitement of the opening minute.

Former Nagoya striker Frode, worked hard up front and despite his technical shortcomings, always tried to help Shimizu get back into the game. He dropped back into midfield frequently, and helped S-Pulse look the more adventurous team in the second half. It was therefore no surprise to see him give S-Pulse a deserved lead, when he poked home the loose ball after Tokushige had fumbled a fierce Hyodo shot. Unfortunately, he was dismissed for a second yellow card shortly afterwards; reacting angrily to reckless challenge. As is usually the case, the referee only saw the reaction and exchange of words, and Johnsen duly received his marching orders. However, his goal saw S-pulse go top of the group and assures them of a place in the quarter-finals, where they could well face his former employers Grampus (if S-Pulse still top the group after next weekend's final group games.)

Vissel
Kenta Tokushige
Toshihiko Uchiyama, Kunie Kitamoto, Tsuneysu Miyamoto, Yosuke Ishibitsu
Hideo Tanaka, Park Kang Jo (Ryuhei Niwa HT), Ryosuke Matsuoka (Alan Bahia HT), Takayuki Yoshida (Akihito Kusunose 80)
Marcel, Hiroto Mogi
Scorer: Marcel 1 (PK)

Shimizu S-Pulse
Kaito Yamamoto
Shinji Tsujio (Junpei Takagi 63), Naoaki Aoyama, Keisuke Iwashita, Arata Kodama
Jungo Fujimoto, Teruyoshi Ito, Takuma Edamura (Takuya Honda 87), Akihiro Hyodo (Marcos Polo 81)
Frode Johnsen, Kazuki Hara
Scorers: Hara 36, Johnsen 77

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