In what proved a frustrating afternoon, Sarina Bolden and the rest of Chifure AS Elfen Saitama were left to lament a 1-1 draw against the Urawa Reds Ladies in the 2021–22 WE League, Saturday, at the Kumagaya Athletic Stadium in Saitama, Japan.
The result saw Elfen Saitama remain in 11th place in the standings with just six points on the back of one win and three draws.
On the other hand, Urawa Reds temporarily clinched second place with 16 points from five wins and one draw.
“We expected today’s match to be a match where we have a lot of patience because we are facing the Reds. But rather than being aware of our opponents, we played with the team in mind that we would challenge ourselves without fear because of what we have prepared in the practice, and that we will play as a team,” stated a translated version of coach Etsuko Handa’s comments.
Bolden came on in the 88th minute in place of midfielder Hikaru Yumura. And she saw her team crumble in the end after leading all the way in the contest.
Yumura had given the lead to Elfen Saitama as early as the first minute of the match. However, they failed to hold on as Urawa Reds’ Yuzuho Shiokoshi put the ball at the back of the net in the 90+1 minute.
“I think the players really expressed that. It was a chance to score three points, so we will build up again from here because it was the next match that will lead to us,” added Handa.
Next up for Bolden and the rest of Elfen Saitama is a clash against Albirex Niigata Ladies in the 2021-22 Empress’ Cup. Match is on December 25, 2021, at the Nagano U Stadium in Nagano, Japan. The kickoff time is 10:00 AM in Manila.