J.League Wrap: Sanfrecce fight back as top four win again
By Football News
Sanfrecce Hiroshima fought from behind to beat Kawasaki Frontale 2-1 and maintain their winning start to the J.League season on Saturday.
Yu Kobayashi's opener late in the first half looked set to put a dent in the champions' hopes of defending their title but Hajime Moriyasu's side showed their steel to hit back after the break.
Hisato Sato settled some nerves with his goal three on 57 minutes before things started to unravel for the visitors - Jeci shown a straight red card in stoppage time before Tsukasa Shiotani struck a dramatic winner from a free-kick.
On a weekend where the top four sides continued to match one another, Sagan Tosu made it six points from six against Urawa Reds thanks to Yohei Toyoda's ninth-minute winner.
Sagan are yet to concede a goal this season, as are Yokohama F Marinos, who were too strong for 10-man Shimizu S-Pulse - Manabu Saito scoring the winner at the IAI Stadium Nihondaira.
Kashima Antlers are the new table-toppers after Yasushi Endo's brace handed them their second win in as many matches and kept Vegalta Sendai on zero points.
Sendai sit a spot above top-flight new-boys Tokushima Vortis whose rude awakening in the J.League continued.
In their first home match in the top tier of Japanese football, they were beaten 2-0 by Cerezo Osaka thanks to goals in the opening 15 minutes from Hotaru Yamaguchi and a Mitsuru Chiyotanda own goal.
There was more positive news for Akira Nishino and his Nagoya Grampus side, as the former Gamba Osaka manager picked up his first points in charge of the club.
Goals from Keiji Tamada and Yoshizumi Ogawa helped them to a 2-1 win against Omiya Ardija while newly promoted Gamba Osaka picked up their first points of the campaign.
Keisuke Iwashita and Kotaro Omari found the net in the final 21 minutes to see off Albirex Niigata while Tokyo and Vissel Kobe picked up a point each at home.
They drew 1-1 against Ventforet Kofu and Kashiwa Reysol respectively, with Kobe seeing Fabio Simplicio sent off 13 minutes from time.