Miyazawa earns Yamagata point against Reds; Grampus beat Jubilo


Katsuyuki Miyazawa scrambled home a second-half equalizer to earn Montedio Yamagata a point at home to Urawa Reds in a 1-1 draw in the J. League on Sunday.

Edmilson gave Urawa a deserved lead with his first goal of the season but the former Asian club champion had to settle for a share of the spoils after Miyazawa bundled in Tatsuya Furuhashi’s free kick on a cold and wet afternoon at ND Soft Stadium.

“Yamagata did what they are good at today. They had a lot of movement and tried to make use of their long ball game,” said Urawa manager Volker Finke.

“We got a point away from home so I can’t really complain but we just have to make sure we keep taking maximum points at home,” added the German, whose side edged FC Tokyo at home last week after losing to champion Kashima Antlers in the opening round of matches.

Yamagata, yet to win so far this season, has two points.

Urawa shaded the early stages and broke the deadlock on the half-hour mark when Hajime Hosogai crossed from the left for Edmilson to send a free header past Kenta Shimizu.

The visitors kept Shimizu busy in the Yamagata goal as Yuki Abe and substitute Sergio Escudero both went close early in the second period, but Yamagata hit back against the run of play when Miyazawa stuck out a foot to prod Furuhashi’s ball into the box past Norihiro Yamagishi on 58 minutes.

Both sides had opportunities to snatch a winner, Furuhashi’s free kick clipping the crossbar on 73 minutes before Escudero fired just wide in the closing moments.

“Both teams created chances but this was a match we had to win today,” said Yamagata manager Shinji Kobayashi. “Urawa are not that good when it comes to dealing with crosses and we should have tried a more simple way of getting the ball into the danger area.”

At Mizuho Stadium, Igor Burzanovic and Josh Kennedy were on target as Nagoya Grampus beat winless Jubilo Iwata 2-0 in the day’s other match.