While Avispa are battling to return to J1 it is easy to forget they are also still in the Emperor’s cup having knocked out J1’s Hiroshima last round. It is particularly easy to forget as the Cup doesn’t seem to be very popular or well publicised in Japan.
The 2 teams lining up showed how seriously the clubs were taking it. with almost entire reserve teams playing against each other. The only first team member playing for Avispa was Genki due to his suspension in the upcoming League match.
It is good to see some of the younger players given a chance, and they have acquitted themselves very well by scraping through on penalties again.
It was a game including some great goals with Omiya twice going ahead through excellent individual strikes, and Avispa answering quickly both times through well worked team goals. Sandwiched in the middle was time for Suzuki Jun to miss a penalty in normal time.
Winning on penalties it was Rokutan who should take all the credit with 2 saves, the first of which is a really good one. The players who took penalties for Avispa were Yutaka, Jumbo (miss), Suzuki Jun, Hideya and Abe.