(Albirex Niigata’s attempts to qualify for the latter stages of the Yamazaki Nabisco Cup come to an end, as they fail to beat a dominant but profligate Yokohama F-Marinos at a very wet NHK Spring Mitsuzawa Football Stadium on Matchday Six)
Shimizu S-Pulse maintained their 100% record and reigning champions Kashima Antlers can no longer be caught as both Group B sides progressed to the knockout rounds of the Yamazaki Nabisco Cup on Matchday Six of the competition. Only a win would have been sufficient for Albirex Niigata to prolong the group stage and force the Ibaraki Prefecture outfit into a potentially fascinating final day encounter at home to S-Pa, but they could not overcome Yokohama F-Marinos at the NHK Spring Mitsuzawa Football Stadium and their challenge petered out with a 0-0 draw.
Any one of four teams can still qualify for the quarter-finals in Group A, but Sagan Tosu may bemoan their defending as they suffered their heaviest loss in any format in 2012, a 5-1 trouncing at the Hiroshima Big Arch giving them a significant disadvantage in terms of goal difference. Sagan next travel to the KINCHO Stadium level on points with Cerezo Osaka requiring a victory by a minimum of three clear goals to stand any chance of a berth in the last eight, and in the hope that Vegalta Sendai do not pick up three points at the Yurtec Stadium when they host group leaders Jubilo Iwata. A single point, meanwhile, is all that Jubilo need to sustain their presence in the tournament.
Ryang Y-G 63′
|Kawasaki Frontale||0||Jubilo Iwata
Ishihara 78′, 81′
|Yokohama F-Marinos||0||Albirex Niigata||0|
Okubo 12′, 20′
(Matches played 9 June 2012. This was a bye week for Group A’s Urawa Red Diamonds and Group B’s Kashima Antlers, who return to Yamazaki Nabisco Cup action on 27 June, the final round of matches at the group stage)
|5||Urawa Red Diamonds||5||2||0||3||9||10||-1||6|