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Photo from Ceres-Negros


Ceres-Negros bows out of AFC Champions League against 10-man FC Tokyo

Ceres-Negros Football Club’s magical run in Asian club football’s biggest dance has come to an abrupt end. 

Against FC Tokyo of Japan, the pride of Bacolod succumbed to a 2-0 defeat in the play-off round of the 2020 AFC Champions League, Tuesday evening at the Ajinomoto Stadium.

The result relegates Ceres to the 2020 AFC Cup group stage, where they will be part of Group G alongside the likes of Than Quảng Ninh of Vietnam; Indonesia’s Bali United; and one other team from the competition’s qualifiers.

With the task at hand already daunting for the visitors without talisman Stephan Schrock, the Busmen did everything to hold the home side at bay in the first half. Veteran stopper Roland Muller was the bedrock in Ceres’ defense, performing fine saves to deny the likes of skipper Keigo Higashi and midfielder Adaílton.

However, Ceres’ valiant efforts to stay in the game ended just three minutes after the restart. FC Tokyo defender Sei Muroya’s attempt on goal went past Muller, much to the disappointment of Risto Vidakovic’s men.

FC Tokyo kept on pushing for another goal to seal the victory. Adailton had a goal disallowed in the 64th minute due to offside, which gave hope to Ceres. Soon after, the home side was down to 10 men when forward Taichi Hara elbowed Ceres midfielder Takeshi Odawara in the 79th minute.

Ceres threw everything in search of a leveler, but attempts from Super Herrera and Robert Lopez Mendy failed to hit the target. With time running out, the Busmen had a penalty appeal waved off, which led to a swift counterattack finished off by Adailton’s strike in the 89th minute.

#ReadMore  Ceres-Negros overcomes Yangon United comeback, books spot in ASEAN Zone Final

The first AFC Cup fixture for Ceres will be a home game on February 11. Their opponents have yet to be finalized.

FC Tokyo XI: Akihiro Hayashi (GK), Masato Morishige, Ryoya Ogawa, Sei Muroya, Joan Oumari, Shuto Abe, Adailton, Keigo Higashi ©, Yojiro Takahagi, Leandro, Taichi Hara.

Ceres-Negros XI: Muller (GK), Grommen, Super, De Bruycker, Villanueva ©, Minegishi, Odawara, Marasigan, Maranon, Porteria, Lopez.

Written By

Lorenzo's a frustrated author who knows a thing or two about Football and Basketball. Went all green from Ortigas to Taft. Supports Liverpool FC, FC Bayern Munich and the Alaska Aces

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