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Kawasaki Frontale stun Chelsea

Friday, July 19, 2019
Leandro Damiao-Kawasaki Frontale-AFP

Kawasaki: J-League Champions Kawasaki Frontale pulled off a stunning 1-0 victory against Chelsea in friendly at Yokohama on Friday.

Kawasaki striker Leandro Damiao headed in a Kengo Nakamura cross from a close range in the 87th minute to clinch the upset in front of 61,012 spectators.

Chelsea struggled to find the net despite waves of attacks, with Kawasaki players cautious in defence, particularly before the break.

A long journey and high humidity in Japan during the early days of pre-season caused "difficulties for us physically", said Chelsea coach Frank Lampard.

"The quality of our players on the ball was not quite where we want. It's very, very normal in pre-season. We will get there."

"I got no fears. I was happy with (a) big part of the performance," he added.

Chelsea are on a pre-season tour of Japan, and will play a friendly against FC Barcelona on Tuesday in Saitama, north of Tokyo.

It was a sell-out crowd tonight! 👏

Thank you for your magnificent support, and congrats to our hosts on the win. #CFCinJapan

— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) July 19, 2019

For Kawasaki, the hard-won victory also showed the quality of Chelsea squad.

"Honestly, the game showed us that they (Chelsea) are very strong," Kawasaki coach Toru Oniki said after the match.

"We were not allowed play our own football. We felt a lot of pressure. It's great that we won after having struggled so much," he said.

"But we went into the match to win, and we won. This was big."

Source: AFP