Kashima Antlers picked up their first points in the AFC Champions League on Wednesday with a 2-0 win over Shanghai Shenhua, while Kawasaki Frontale shared the spoils with Pohang Steelers in a 1-1 draw in South Korea.
Stunned 4-1 by Suwon Bluewings in their opening Group G game last week, Antlers, the reigning J. League champions, were looking for a morale boost in front of their fans.
With neither side looking likely to score, Osako collected a pass in midfield a minute before the break and cleverly released Takuya Nozawa with a clean through ball into the box, the Kashima midfielder leaving three defenders in his wake as he slotted low into the corner of the net.
In the 67th minute Wei Du duly collected his marching orders for a second bookable offense. In the 80th minute the Antlers made their advantage tell when Marquinhos shrugged off his marker as he powered down the left and placed a perfect center for Osako to hit first-time high into the net.
In Group H, Pohang midfielder Kim Jae Sung gave the South Korean hosts the lead in the 11th minute, but Kawasaki defender Shuhei Terada leveled in the 22nd.
Arsenal makes semis
LONDON (AP) William Gallas’ goal five minutes from time lifted Arsenal past Hull 2-1 and into the F.A. Cup semifinals on Tuesday.
Arsenal will meet Chelsea in a semifinal on April 18, the first time the Gunners will play at the rebuilt Wembley.
Hull stunned Arsenal at Emirates Stadium in the 13th minute when defender Andy Dawson’s lofted pass found Nick Barmby in the area and his shot deflected off Arsenal defender Johan Djourou and looped in over goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.
The equalizer didn’t arrive until the 75th, after a pass by Nicklas Bendtner in front of goal was deflected into the path of Andrei Arshavin, who set up Robin van Persie for an easy tap-in.
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