Wanderers outclassed by Urawa
The Western Sydney Wanderers have fallen 6-1 to Urawa Red Diamonds in their AFC Champions League Group F clash at Saitama Stadium on Wednesday night.
The home side were imperious throughout the 90 minutes as the Wanderers struggled to make their mark on the game despite Jumpei Kusukami’s lone goal.
Urawa opened the scoring in the 14th minute, Takahiro Sekine firing home from the edge of the box after a Yuki Muto cut-back.
Four minutes later, a clever pass from Yoshikami Komai set up the second, as Zlatan Ljubijankic was able to poke past Vedran Janjetovic in goal.
The Wanderers first chance came late in the first half when a cross from Scott Neville picked out Brendon Santalab but the striker’s header rebounded off the cross bar.
Yet the Wanderers’ momentum was stalled as a neat move by Urawa allowed Tandari Lee to add a third from close range just before half time.
After the break, Santalab had a glorious chance to get his name on the scoresheet after being put through on goal by Kearyn Baccus but the striker uncharacteristically skied his effort.
The Wanderers did pull one back shortly after though as Jumpei Kusukami sent a lovely chipped effort over Shusaku Nishikawa in goal.
Urawa were quick to respond with a double by Rafael Silva and a goal by Shinzo Koroki sealing what was a much deserved 6-1 victory for the in-form Japanese outfit.
The result ends the Wanderers’ hopes of qualifying for the knockout phase, while Urawa will aim to hold onto top spot in the group heading into the last match day.
The Red & Black will look to end their season on a positive note when they welcome Chinese heavyweights Shanghai SIPG to Campbelltown Stadium on 10 May.