Urawa Reds edge Kawasaki Frontale to reach Asian Champions League semis

From ESPN - September 13, 2017

Two goals in a minute late in the second half sealed Urawa Red Diamonds' place in the semifinals of the Asian Champions League on Wednesday evening as the 2007 champions defeated 10-man Kawasaki Frontale 4-1 on the night and 5-4 on aggregate.

Rafael Silva and Toshiyuki Takagi scored in the 83rd and 84th minutes respectively to earn Takafumi Hori's a place in the last four, where they will take on Chinese Super League side Shanghai SIPG for a place in this year's final.

Kawasaki had taken the lead through Brazilian defender Edilson before Koroki levelled the scores with 10 minutes remaining in the half, but Shintaro Kurumaya was dismissed just three minutes later to give Urawa the numerical advantage throughout the second half.

Kengo Nakamura, so often the orchestrator for Kawasaki, unlocked the Urawa defence as Frontale took the lead with an exquisite lofted pass over the top that checked enough to allow Edilson to beat Shusaku Nishikawa to the ball, which slowly rolled into the empty net.

Urawa had dictated possession to that point but had done little to break through the visiting defence as Reds' tendency to knock the ball backwards and sideways presented little threat to Kawasaki's disciplined rearguard.

The final 10 minutes of the half, though, were to prove pivotal in Urawa's attempt to rescue their Asian Champions League campaign.

Koroki latched on to Shinya Yajima's perfectly weighted pass behind the defence before steadying himself to lift the ball beyond Jung Sung-ryung and into the net for a 35th minute equaliser.


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