Sunday, August 07, 2011

All respect for Matsuda

A minute's silence was observed before kick-off for former Japan defender Naoki Matsuda, who died at the age of 34 on Thursday.

All players and officials in every J-League game wore black armbands as a mark of respect for Matsuda.

His former club Yokohama F. Marinos wanted to beat Kashiwa Reysol as to show their appreciation , but they got a result of 2-0 defeat.

All Marinos footballers wore the same Matsuda's uniform during the warm-up.

In Saitama, Vissel Kobe had taken a 2-0 lead through Takayuki Yoshida's two goals in the first half, but Urawa Reds hit back after the break with strikes from substtitutes Tatsuya Tanaka and Mazzolla.

And regrettably, Yoshito Okubo scored a penalty in the third minute of injury time to give Kobe a 3-2 win over Urawa.

I felt disappointed at that time.

But I also admired the first two goals from Takayuki Yoshida, who was born on the same day as Matsuda.

Takayuki Yoshida showed Matsuda's number "3" with his fingers after his goals.

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