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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

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In pursuit: Marcus Tulio Tanaka of Nagoya Grampus and Adelaide United's Bruce Jose Djite chase the ball in Asian Champions League action on Tuesday in Adelaide, Australia. Grampus lost 1-0. KYODO

Adelaide United eliminates Nagoya Grampus from Asian Champions League


Adelaide, Australia — Nagoya Grampus crashed out of the Asian Champions League after a 1-0 defeat away to Australia's Adelaide United in the round of 16 on Tuesday.

Jonathan McKain scored the decider late in the first half and Adelaide goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic was in superb form, pulling off a string of saves to deny the 2010 J.League champions a place in the quarterfinals.

Marcus Tulio Tanaka presented Adelaide with the first chance to open the scoring when he conceded a free kick in bringing down Bruce Jose Djite, but Dario Vidosic fizzed his effort just over the bar from 20 meters.

Iain Ramsay then tried his luck from distance as the home side piled on the early pressure, although it was Grampus that went desperately close to opening the scoring on 33 minutes.

Australia striker Josh Kennedy's header had goal written all over it, but Galekovic somehow managed to keep the ball out with a reaction save that evoked memories of Gordon Banks' famous stop from Brazilian legend Pele at the 1970 World Cup.

Grampus, though, were left to count the cost of sloppy marking as Adelaide took the lead with a scrappy effort three minutes before the interval. Nigel Boogaard was left completely unmarked to head on Vidosic's right-wing corner, and McKain was on hand to bundle the ball over the line.

Nagoya went close to forcing an equalizer midway through the second half, only to be thwarted again as Galekovic produced another fine stop to keep out Takahiro Masukawa's header and then tipped over Mu Kanazaki's header.

In Wednesday's matches involving Japanese teams in the round of 16, J.League champions Kashiwa Reysol visit South Korea's Ulsan Hyundai, while FC Tokyo is playing away in China against Guangzhou Evergrande.

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