ICHIHARA, Chiba Pref. — Choi Yong Soo headed home the winner in the 88th minute to give JEF United Ichihara a 2-1 comeback win over nine-man Tokyo Verdy at Ichihara Seaside Stadium on Saturday.
The South Korea striker outjumped two Verdy defenders to connect with a fine cross from Masataka Sakamoto to seal the game.
Jun Tamano put Verdy ahead in the 12th minute reacting quickly to a deflection off JEF defender Takayuki Chano and rounding Ichihara ‘keeper Ryo Kushino to slot home from close range.
But five minutes after the break, Satoru Yamagishi blasted home the equalizer for the home team from the right side of the box.
The game was eventful to say the least. Three players were treated for head wounds and a total of 11 yellow cards and two red cards were handed out by referee Joji Kashihara, with Verdy having eight players booked and two sent off.
“We started well and scored first. But then we started receiving yellow cards, which made our players play rather passively and saw a drop in the quality of our play,” Verdy manager Lori lamented.
The Brazilian manager approached the ref after the final whistle in protest. “I will leave this issue with our club’s front office but I wish the ref could have kept a cooler head.”
Verdy officials said the club is considering submitting an official complaint to the J. League.
Antlers off to flyer
Brazilian striker Euller scored one goal and set up another as four-time champion Kashima Antlers got off to a great start in the J. League first division on Saturday with a 3-1 victory at home to Urawa Reds.
In other games, an 84th-minute header by Kelly earned all three points as FC Tokyo beat Kashiwa Reysol 2-1.
Cerezo Osaka made an unhappy return to the first division, a 17th-minute strike by Brazilian striker Oseas giving Vissel Kobe a 1-0 win at Nagai Stadium.
In Nagoya, Shimizu S-Pulse and Grampus Eight played to a 2-2 draw.
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