Urawa Reds counted on a second-half avalanche of goals to defeat Ventforet Kofu 4-1 in their MEIJI YASUDA J1 League clash on Friday.
After a goalless first half, it fell to Shinzo Koroki to break the deadlock in the 57th minute, before Yuki Muto doubled the Reds’ lead on the hour mark.
Ventforet substitute Dudu pulled one back for the visitors later, but Tadanari Lee and Rafael Silva struck late to ensure Mihailo Petrovic’s troops collected all three points.
Last term’s runners-up are now one point behind leaders Kawasaki Frontale after they saw off 10-man Kashiwa Reysol 2-1.
Shogo Taniguchi opened the scoring for the hosts with his header from a corner right before the break, before Kengo Nakamura netted three minutes later.
Kosuke Taketomi made the Todoroki Stadium crowd nervous when he turned in a corner for Reysol in the 60th minute, but Yuta Nakayama’s straight red card did little to help their cause chasing the game as the final score remained the same.
Japanese champions Kashima Antlers picked up their second straight win with a 1-0 victory over Yokohama F. Marinos, with Yuma Suzuki heading in a late decisive goal.