The semifinals of the 2017 Emperor’s Cup took place on Saturday with Cerezo Osaka and Yokohama F. Marinos advancing to the final on New Year’s Day.
After a dramatic 90th minute at Yanmar Stadium in which Vissel’s Kotaro Omori scored only to be rebuffed by Kota Mizunuma’s equaliser, Cerezo took their first lead of the match in the 98th minute through Yoichiro Kakitani’s goal.
They then clinched the result when Souza found the back of the net in the 114th minute. The Levain Cup winners will contest their first Emperor’s Cup final since the 2003 edition.
Meanwhile at Todoroki Stadium, Kashiwa Reysol took the lead over F. Marinos when Ramon Lopes scored in the 11th minute.
Sho Ito’s 69th-minute equaliser would send the match into extra time, where a dramatic winner by Hugo Viera sent Erick Mombaerts’ men to their first final since 2013.
The final will take place on January 1, 2018 at Saitama Stadium.