Ado Onaiwu scrambled through a late winner Tuesday as Yokohama F. Marinos narrowly defeated Cerezo Osaka 1-0 in the J. League first division.
Despite dictating play for much of the contest, Ange Postecoglou’s men were unable to find a way through the Cerezo defense until the 87th minute at Nissan Stadium in Yokohama.
The visitors failed to clear two attempts by Thiago Martins off a Kota Mizunuma corner kick before Onaiwu, a 67th minute substitute, gathered a rebound and fired home from point-blank range.
With the win, Marinos broke a victory drought dating back to 2011 against Cerezo, who saw their five-game unbeaten streak snapped in the absence of regulars Yoshito Okubo, Ayumu Seko and Yusuke Maruhashi under coronavirus safety protocols, along with manager Levir Culpi.
“It was a really tough game that we needed to win, so I’m glad we were able to do it,” Onaiwu said. “For a long time, no matter how well we played, (Cerezo) were a team we couldn’t beat.”
Cerezo forward Yuta Toyokawa put the ball in the net on a 10th-minute counterattack, but the visitors’ celebrations were cut short by the assistant referee raising his flag for offside.
The win lifted Marinos three places to fifth in the standings, while Cerezo remain third.
“We dominated, we created chances and we didn’t give them too many, and we deserved the win,” Postecoglou said.
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