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Review: Kashiwa Reysol 1-1 Cerezo Osaka (J1 MD6)

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Leo Ceara's third goal of the season put us ahead, but the lead was soon canceled out. The two teams shared a point in a fierce battle in the rain.

Three days after the previous match against Shonan Bellmare, Cerezo Osaka traveled to the home of Kashiwa Reysol for a mid-week match. There was one change from the previous match. Jordy Croux replaced Lucas Fernandes on the right wing. Hiroto Yamada was named on the bench for the first time this season.

With the atmosphere of a Kashiwa home match in the stadium, Cerezo were pushed back by their opponents from the start. In the 5th minute, a pass from the Kashiwa backline was met by a defender in front of the goal, but goalkeeper Kim Jin Hyeon was there to save the day. The man who had played a key role in our victory in the previous match had already saved the day. In the 14th minute, Kyohei Noborizato sent a long pass down the left flank and Capixaba used his pace to beat his marker and cross into the middle. Leo Ceara was brought down by an opposing defender and converted the penalty in the 19th minute to give Cerezo the lead. Despite the early pressure, Cerezo took the lead through a clever pass from Noborizato, who turned the arrows of the opponent team, but soon caught up with the opponents two minutes later. After a series of errors in their own half, Cerezo lost possession and Takuya Shimamura, who also played for Cerezo Osaka U-23 in 2008, dribbled in and Kashiwa's number 10 Matheus Savio found the back of the net. Cerezo continued to work hard defensively, but after 30 minutes Cerezo began to fight back with the ball, and despite good chances in the 34th and 42nd minutes from Croux's side, they were unable to finish the game.

In the second half, Cerezo continued to defend against Kashiwa's attacks from the start, but Akio Kogiku made an early move to change the game. In the 57th minute, Hiroaki Okuno and Vitor Bueno were replaced by Sota Kitano and Masaya Shibayama, and in the 67th minute, Hiroto Yamada replaced Capixaba. In the 61st minute, Shibayama took a pass from Noborizato, dribbled and shot. In the 68th minute, Yamada took a pass from Noborizato and crossed from the left. Kitano took a defender's clearance and fired a shot. Two minutes before that, in the 66th minute, the opposing team broke down the left side of the field and had a chance to score, but a great save by Kim Jin Hyeon prevented a goal from being scored.

From this point on, the game became more open towards the end. In the 80th minute, Kakeru Funaki's vertical pass found Kitano and Yamada, and Yamada sent an excellent cross that just missed Ceara. In the 88th minute, we had another great chance when Seiya Maikuma and Noborizato combined with a pass in the middle of the field. Kitano got inside and tried to shoot, but her shot was blocked by the opposing defense. Cerezo had a good chance to score, but were a bit further away from the goal. However, Cerezo defended well against Kashiwa's sharp attack and did not concede a goal. The match ended 1-1, with both teams giving their all and maintaining a high level of intensity.

"We were repeatedly hit by quick counters, which is our opponent's strong point. We need to review how we lost the ball and our positioning," said Kogiku after the match. At the same time, "it was a game in which we were able to demonstrate our offensive aims from the first 30 minutes onwards. We were able to enter the final zone with a lot of intent. The players who came on in the middle of the game also played well. While the team is naturally disappointed not to have won the game, they will be looking to build on the fact that they were able to earn a point in a difficult away game. The next game is an away match against Albirex Niigata, again in three days. They will try to recover both mentally and physically and make up for last season's final game.

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