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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Antlers rally past Sydney FC


Kashima Antlers kept alive their hopes of finishing top of Group H and securing a home tie in the second round of the Asian Champions League on Tuesday after coming from behind to beat already eliminated Sydney FC 2-1 at National Stadium.

The seven-time J. League champion, fielding a weakened starting lineup, fell behind on Matt Jurman's 26th-minute header but improved with the introduction of Fellype Gabriel, who set up Yuya Osako to strike a superb equalizer before Takuya Nozawa sealed victory with a free kick at Antlers' temporary home four minutes from time.

At Nagai Stadium, tournament debutants Cerezo Osaka hammered Shandong Luneng 4-0 to join Antlers and Grampus in the last 16.

On Wednesday, former Asian champions Gamba Osaka take on Group E leaders Tianjin Teda at Expo Stadium where Akira Nishino's side will look to secure a top-two finish, while Grampus will play UAE side Al Ain away for first place in their group.

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