Record-setter Sato focused on defensive improvement

Record-setter Sato focused on defensive improvement

Hisato Sato on Sunday set a new all-time J.League scoring record with his 158th top-flight goal, although he proved disappointed with Sanfrecce Hiroshima’s 1-1 draw at Nagoya Grampus.

The history-making strike came late in the first half Sunday’s match, but despite the attention on his goal, the veteran striker was more concerned with the one his side allowed in the 17th minute to Swedish import Robin Simovic.

“We controlled Grampus well in the first half and created many chances on offence, but it was my mistake that led to their counter and allowed them to score,” Sato said. 

“I wanted to score my own goal in order to make it up to my team. I might not say it was a great goal but it was a meaningful goal and that makes me feel better.”

Sato now stands one goal ahead of Kashiwa Frontale striker Yoshito Okubo and former Jubilo Iwata legend Mashashi ‘Gon’ Nakayama, who are tied at a total of 157 goals.