• Kyodo

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Midfielder Toshiya Fujita made a winning start on his league debut for FC Utrecht as the Dutch Cup winner edged FC Zwolle 1-0 in its opening match of the season Sunday.

The 31-year-old, who joined Utrecht on a loan deal from J. League champion Jubilo Iwata earlier this month, started in a central midfield role and put in a solid all-round performance before being substituted five minutes from time.

Fullback Patrick Zwaanswijk grabbed the winner from a corner on 19 minutes and Fujita almost put the icing on the cake when he went close to doubling his side’s lead on the hour.

“The fans really made me feel at home and now it’s up to me to repay them by putting in some good performances,” said Fujita, who was cheered off the field as he made his way to the substitute’s bench.

In Germany, striker Naohiro Takahara was handed a second straight start but failed to find the net in Hamburg SV’s defeat at VfL Wolfsburg.

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