March 10, 2018
First win of the season for Tokushima Vortis. The men of Ricardo Rodriguez faced the third matchday not in a situation of urgency, but of necessity. All points have a vital importance in a competition as even as the Japan League 2, where playing the play-off, as it happened last season, can depend on just one point or the goal-difference.
The first victory of the blues came after a match for the records, marked by the great goal of Uchida and a last play where Omiya Ardija hit twice the crossbar. Tokushima Vortis started again with a very offensive version, with an attacking line formed by Sugimoto, Goya and Shimaya. Tokushima Vortis had a clear opportunity to get the lead on the scoreboard after only ten minutes into the game. Sugimoto, in a great action, assisted Iwao with a through pass into the box, but he could not score. First it was cleared by Kasahara, local goalkeeper, and in the following action the defense, clearing the ball on the goal line. Kasahara was the protagonist again halfway through the first half stopping a new goal of Tokushima Vortis. The goalkeeper of Omiya Ardija, very agile, saved close to the goal line the shot by Sugimoto. There were no more chances in a very dynamic first half, dominated by Tokushima Vortis and with Omiya Ardija waiting for the counterattack.
The locals had the best chance of the match shortly after halftime. Omae, their striker, found the space among the defense to get into the goal, but not the tranquility to make a good shot. Yet the best of the match was still to come. Tokushima Vortis turned around their defending problems in corner kicks to score in precisely one of their weaknesses. And not just any goal, a great goal, in a play that comes from Ricardo Rodríguez’s laboratory in the 52nd minute. Uchida waited outside the box to catch the assist from the corner by Sugimoto. His volley shot was perfect, slipping through the top corner of Omiya Ardija’s goal in what is, without a doubt, the best goal so far in 2018. Not only in the Japan League 2, but worldwide. A candidate for the FIFA Puskas Award for best goal of the year. The goal spurred Tokushima Vortis, and especially Maekawa, who had two chances to close the game, but his shots did not find the deserved reward. In an open game like this one, the last play was full of suspense. Omiya Ardija had a corner kick in which the locals hit twice the crossbar, the second of them by Kasahara, local goalkeeper. The luck was on the side of Ricardo Rodriguez men this time, who won the three points in a game that will remain in history for the goal by Uchida.