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Sunday, Dec. 17, 2006

Osieck to replace Buchwald at Reds

SAITAMA (Kyodo) Holger Osieck is to manage newly crowned J. League champions Urawa Reds for a second time after agreeing Saturday to a provisional contract to fill the post vacated by fellow German Guido Buchwald.

The 58-year-old Osieck met with Urawa President Mitsunori Fujiguchi after Urawa's 3-0 Emperor's Cup win over Avispa Fukuoka and is set to be formally named manager on Tuesday.

"There are a lot of Japan internationals and good foreign players at Urawa and I think it is a team with huge potential," said Osieck. (Next season's) Asian Champions League will be a new challenge."

Urawa appointed Osieck in 1995 after the Reds finished at the wrong end of the overall standings the previous two years and the German manager guided the team to a fourth-place finish in his first season in charge and sixth the following year.

After leaving Urawa, the 58-year-old Osieck went on to lead the Canada national team to its first title in a major competition at the 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Osieck headed the FIFA technical study group at this summer's World Cup finals in Germany.

Urawa advances

SAITAMA (Kyodo) Holders Urawa Reds moved into the quarterfinals of the Emperor's Cup on Saturday after laboring to a 3-0 extra-time win over relegated Avispa Fukuoka.

Fukuoka goalkeeper Ryuichi Kamiyama kept the Reds at bay with a string of superb saves before Robson Ponte finally broke the deadlock in the 94th minute at Saitama Stadium 2002.

Washington and substitute Yuichiro Nagai added further goals to set up a meeting with Jubilo Iwata in the last eight, although the final scoreline somewhat flattered the newly crowned J. League champions.

The game was played a week after the other fifth-round ties because of Fukuoka's involvement in a relegation-promotion playoff against second-division Vissel Kobe.

The two-leg playoff finished 1-1 on aggregate but Kobe were promoted on the away goals rule and Fukuoka went down after just one season back in the top flight.

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