Kobe, Jeonbuk Motors advance in Asian Champions League
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Vissel Kobe moved into the quarterfinals of the Asian Champions League with a 3-2 win over Japanese rival Yokohama F. Marinos on Thursday.
Despite being third from bottom in the J.League standings, Kobe was too good for the Japanese league leader in the second-round encounter at Saitama Stadium.
Nanasei Iino gave Kobe a seventh-minute lead but Yokohama, looking for to reach the last eight for the first time, hit back quickly through Takuma Nishimura.
Kobe went back in front in the 31st minute when Daiju Sasaki scored from the penalty spot following a Yuki Saneto handball and Yutaro Oda made it 3-1 with 10 minutes remaining.
A late goal from Yokohama’s Anderson Lopes cut the deficit, but Kobe saw out the game.
Kobe will be joined in the quarterfinal draw by Jeonbuk Motors, which defeated Daegu FC 2-1 after extra time in an all-South Korean matchup.
Two-time champion Jeonbuk dominated most of the game and took the lead through Song Min-kyu early in the second half. After Brazilian striker Zeca pulled Daegu level, Kim Jin-kyu won it for Jeonbuk in the last minute of extra time.
On Friday, Urawa Reds of Japan take on Malaysia’s Johor Darul Tazim and Kitchee of Hong Kong meets Thailand’s Pathum United.
The tournament is divided into two geographic regions. The second round of the western half of the draw will not be held until Feb. 2023.
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