Marquinhos capped a fruitful week with a late double to give champions Kashima Antlers a 2-0 win away to promoted Tokyo Verdy in the J. League on Sunday.
Kashima appeared to be heading for a stalemate until Marquinhos ran on to a through ball from substitute Danilo and rounded Yoichi Doi to prod home from a tight angle with 15 minutes remaining.
The Brazilian striker, hat-trick hero in Kashima’s Asian Champions League triumph in Thailand in midweek, then made the points safe three minutes from time with another neat finish after being picked out by Atsuto Uchida.
In the day’s other game, Marquinhos’ former Kashima teammate Atsushi Yanagisawa opened his account as Kyoto Sanga recorded their first win back in the top flight with a come-from-behind 2-1 defeat of Omiya Ardija.
Kashima’s win puts them on a maximum six points with Oita Trinita and Yokohama F. Marinos, who both made it two wins out of two on Saturday.
At Nishikyogoku Stadium, Kota Yoshihara fired Omiya into a 17th-minute lead but Yanagisawa scrambled home the equalizer at the start of the second half and Daigo Watanabe rifled past Koji Ezumi and into the top corner from 25 meters to secure victory eight minutes from time.