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Monday, July 27, 2009

Albirex misses chance to cut gap on Kashima

Kyodo News

Albirex Niigata squandered the chance to cut Kashima Antlers' lead at the top of the table to eight points after succumbing to a late equalizer in a 1-1 draw at home to Montedio Yamagata in the J. League on Sunday.

News photo
Back in it: Yokohama's Kim Kun Hoan celebrates his equalizer against Jubilo on Sunday. KYODO PHOTO

Marcio Richardes' 48th-minute free kick looked to have made the points safe for Niigata but Yu Hasegawa popped up a minute from time to earn the visitors a share of the spoils at Big Swan.

Reigning champion Kashima, held to a surprise 1-1 draw at home to struggling Kashiwa Reysol on Saturday, is 10 points clear of Niigata and Urawa Reds, while Kawasaki Frontale fell further off the pace after going down 3-1 at Kyoto Sanga.

Takuro Yajima headed Frontale in front after six minutes but Kyoto hit back from the penalty spot through Diego, and Jun Ando put the home side in front before Diego completed his brace shortly before the hour mark at Nishikyogoku Stadium.

Frontale's first defeat in 10 league matches leaves it 11 points behind Kashima in fourth place.

In the day's other game, Lee Keun Ho, back with Jubilo Iwata after a move to French club Paris Saint-Germain broke down, was on target in his side's 1-1 draw at home to Yokohama F. Marinos.

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