As an away game I have to try to get pieces of information from my not so great Japanese, but will hopefully find video of the goals to upload later.
JEF United are one of the better teams in J2 having only recently relegated from J1 where within the last decade they have competed for the title; finishing 3rd in 2001 and 2003 and 4th in 2004 and 2005 and winning the J-League cup in 2005 and 2006.
They have some quality players, like Australian international Mark Milligan and Brazilian Alex who used to play for Avispa and established himself as a bit of a legend at the club. According to wikipedia they were quite ludicrously linked with Michael Owen when he left Newcastle.
2nd in the table at the start of play getting anything from this game would be a good result for Avispa.
After a 6-1 win in the last game it was unsurprising that the starting XI was unchanged from the Kumamoto game, with the most notable part of this for me being that Okamoto retained his place ahead of Takahashi who was on the bench.
Fukuoka started the game well with Okubo and Okamoto linking well with Nagasato to set a nice rhythm to the game, with JEF United relying on counter-attacks.
There then appears to have been some sort of mistake by Tanaka which allowed Sato of JEF to score in the 26th minute.
At this stage I would have been worried to be watching as JEF are near the top of the table based on scoring a lot of goals, and I’ve seen Avispa drop their heads after going a goal down and drift out of games.
In this game however they seem to have carried on playing and 10 minutes later leveled the score at 1-1 through man of the moment Nakamachi scoring with a shot through the middle.
Chances continued to be made into the 2nd half as Suzuki was brought on for Okubo with 30 minutes to play, presumably to try a different approach to unlocking the JEF defence with Suzuki’s intelligent through balls rather than the more direct Okubo.
Fukuoka ended the game slightly on top, with 16 shots to 11 from JEF, but the scores remained locked at 1-1. A result which the team should be pleased with, and hopefully will continue their improved form into the home game against Yokohama.