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Sunday, May 23, 2004

Gamba gives Nishino 100th win

OSAKA (Kyodo) Japan midfielder Yasuhito Endo and Masashi Oguro both scored late goals in a frantic finale Saturday as Gamba Osaka beat Vissel Kobe 6-3 to make Akira Nishino the first manager in the J. League first division to reach 100 wins.

News photo
Kashima, Ibaraki Pref. - Mitsuo Ogasawara of the Antlers controls the ball during Saturday's match against FC Tokyo. The match ended in a 0-0 draw.

In an absorbing game at Expo Stadium, Gamba was 2-0 up after just five minutes thanks to goals from Satoshi Yamaguchi and Brazilian striker Magrao, before Kobe hit back through defender Roger shortly before the half-hour mark.

The home side extended its lead through Takahiro Futagawa and Shigeru Morioka, before a goal-crazy final two minutes saw Kobe's Mitsunori Yabuta, Endo, former Japan striker Kazuyoshi Miura and Oguro all find the net.

Elsewhere, JEF United Ichihara and Kashima Antlers both saw their slim title hopes end after being held to draws.

Kashima drew 0-0 at home to FC Tokyo, while Ichihara had to settle for a 1-1 draw at home to struggling Cerezo Osaka.

In Shizuoka, Taku Harada's 62nd-minute free-kick gave Oita Trinita a 2-1 come-from-behind win at Shimizu S-Pulse.

Meanwhile, Japan Olympic team striker Tatsuya Tanaka struck twice in the first half to help keep the Urawa Reds' hopes of a first J. League title alive with a 3-1 away win at Tokyo Verdy.

Sanfrecce Hiroshima won 3-0 at home to Kashiwa Reysol, who remain rooted to the foot of the table with just seven points from 11 games.

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