Shimizu go top, Omiya ease troubles
© AFP

Substitute midfielder Takuma Edamura's strike gave Shimizu S-Pulse a 2-1 win over defending champions Kashima Antlers in a top-of-the-table battle in the J-League.

Jungo Fujimoto's penalty had put Shimizu in front in the 37th minute before Kashima drew level through a Shinzo Koroki header just short of the hour mark.

Just one minute after he replaced Shinji Ono, Edamura hit home following a pass from Shinji Okazaki in the 74th minute, to take Shimizu back to the top of the table.

"I really wanted to win because of so many supporters and I'm happy we won," said Edamura. "It was a lucky goal, but a goal is a goal. I'm happy that it became the game-deciding goal."

It was a lucky goal, but a goal is a goal. I'm happy that it became the game-deciding goal.
Takuma Edamura, Shimizu S-Pulse

Shimizu are now on 36 points, two points above Kashima and four points above Nagoya Grampus, who are due to play FC Tokyo on Sunday.

Elsewhere, Niigata beat bottom-placed side Kyoto Sanga 2-0, while Gamba Osaka defeated Sanfrecce Hiroshima 2-0. Omiya Ardija moved two points clear of the relegation zone when they defeated Shonan Bellmare 3-0 thanks to goals by Yuki Fukaya, Naoki Ishihara and Brazilian striker Rafael.

Yokohama Marinos and Montedio Yamagata were both 1-0 winners over Vegalta Sendai and Jubilo Iwata respectively.