Urawa sets up last-four SIPG clash

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Toshiyuki Takagi struck the decisive blow as 2007 winners Urawa Reds completed a sensational turnaround to progress to the 2017 AFC Champions League semi-finals on Wednesday, winning their quarter-final second leg against Kawasaki Frontale 4-1 to progress 5-4 on aggregate.

Elshino gave Kawasaki a 1-0 lead in the 19th minute, beating the offside trap and nudging beyond a hesitant Shusaku Nishikawa after a clipped through ball from Kengo Nakamura, but Shinzo Koroki pulled one back for Urawa with a neat finish 10 minutes before half time.

The hosts were offered further encouragement when Shintaro Kurumaya was sent off for Kawasaki after a high boot on Koroki in the 38th minute, and Koroki again went close with a header in first half stoppage time.

Substitute Zlatan Ljubijankic put Reds 2-1 up on the night with a towering header from a Yosuke Kashiwagi corner in the 70th minute, before Rafael Silva levelled things up on aggregate after picking his spot and rifling across Jung with six minutes to play.

Takagi then ensured there was to be no need for extra time less than 60 seconds later, applying an exquisite final touch to a Ryota Moriwaki cross and caressing the ball over Jung and home.

Urawa will now face Shanghai SIPG in the semi-finals on September 27 and October 18, after the Chinese side defeated Guangzhou Evergrande 5-4 in a penalty shoot-out after the other eastern quarter-final ended 5-5 on aggregate.

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