A textbook header from substitute Danilo in the 88th minute gave Kashima Antlers a 2-1 win over Vissel Kobe in the fourth round of the Emperor’s Cup on Saturday and a berth in the quarterfinals.
The reigning J. League champions will meet holders Gamba Osaka in the last eight on Dec. 12 after Gamba eased to a 3-1 win against second-division Sagan Tosu in Hiroshima.
At Big Arch, Brazilian striker Lucas put Gamba in front with a ninth-minute penalty and compatriot Pedro Junior doubled the lead five minutes before halftime. Tosu forward Mike Havenaar pulled one back two minutes after the break, but Gamba midfielder Tomokazu Myojin restored the cushion just three minutes later and there was no way back for the J2 outfit.
In Saturday’s only other tie, Shimizu S-Pulse eased to a 3-0 win over Ventforet Kofu in Tottori to book their quarterfinal spot.
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