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Urawa win penalty thriller to reach AFC final

Goalkeeper Shusaku Nishikawa was the hero as Japan’s Urawa Red Diamonds beat stubborn Jeonbuk Motors of South Korea 3-1 on penalties to reach the final of the Asian Champions League on Thursday.

Nishikawa was mobbed by his team-mates after saving twice in the shootout in front of Urawa’s fans in Saitama, a nervy semi-final having ended 2-2 after 120 minutes when the home side grabbed a late leveller.

The final takes place in February against a team from the AFC’s western zone, with reigning champions Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia among the contenders.

Urawa, who won the Champions League in 2007 and 2017, had been prolific coming into the match, plundering 20 goals in their past four matches in Asia’s top club competition. ...continue reading

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