KYOTO – Jungo Fujimoto converted twice from the penalty spot and Eddy Bosnar scored a late blockbuster as leaders Shimizu S-Pulse came from two goals down to preserve their unbeaten start to the season with a stunning 4-2 win at Kyoto Sanga on Wednesday.
Former Japan striker Atsushi Yanagisawa scored his 100th J-League goal and Brazilian forward Dutra took advantage of poor marking to head the second and take Kyoto into the break two goals to the good at a sun-drenched Nishikyogoku Stadium.
But Shimizu came roaring back in the second period and Fujimoto bagged a pair of penalties either side of Frode Johnsen’s 59th-minute header, before Australian defender Bosnar buried a free kick from almost 40 meters out to seal victory in a game that saw both teams finish with 10 men.
S-Pulse moved to 24 points from 10 games and Kenta Hasegawa’s side could open up a five-point gap at the top of the table if Kawasaki Frontale lose at Gamba Osaka in a later match.
“This season we have come back after conceding first but not quite managed to win, especially away from home, so to come from behind and win like this gives us massive confidence,” said Shimizu manager Hasegawa.
“We struggled in the heat a bit in the first half and there were a number of players starting for the first time who were perhaps a bit nervous. But I think we did well to limit our opponents to two goals.”
Elsewhere, substitute Genki Haraguchi scored the winner as Urawa Reds came from behind to beat Nagoya Grampus 2-1 in front of a holiday crowd of over 55,000 at Saitama Stadium 2002, a result that left both teams on 19 points.
Nagoya forward Keiji Tamada, who is likely to be included in the final 23-man squad Japan coach Takeshi Okada names on Monday for the World Cup finals, was substituted at halftime with a sore left groin.
“I am praying it is only a light injury,” said Tamada, who is scheduled to undergo tests on the groin on Thursday.
Champions Kashima Antlers, meanwhile, are a further point adrift after a surprise 2-1 defeat away to promoted Cerezo Osaka, Amaral pouncing on careless defending to win it for Cerezo with 13 minutes left.
FC Tokyo were held to a goalless draw at home to Vegalta Sendai, while at the bottom of the table last-placed Vissel Kobe twice led through goals from Ken Tokura but Kazushi Mitsuhira’s 78th-minute equalizer earned Shonan Bellmare a 2-2 draw at Hiratsuka Stadium.
A double from Ryoichi Maeda gave Jubilo Iwata a 2-1 win at home to Sanfrecce Hiroshima while Marcio Richardes struck the clincher as Albirex Niigata came from behind to beat Yokohama F Marinos 2-1 to make it two wins out of two.