It was going to be tough to begin with but 44 minutes in, Verdy talisman Diego gets run with a straight red and Verdy has to play defense for a good 46 minutes.......outshot 17 to 5, verdy succumbs in the last minute to a shot from midfielder Issei Takayanagi.
So for the second straight year Verdy will be watching the final on tv and now can focus on other things like tv dramas and not getting relegated. One worry has to be the punishment doled out to Diego for the straight red. Already having a squat for picking up too many yellows, I would have speculated that nothing major would happen because he was playing in a seperate competition but last week Omiyas Yasuhiro Hato got suspended for his red in the league and had to sit out the Emperors cup game. If it was a bad foul he could be done for the season, which doesn't help considering defensive anchor Yukio Tsuchiya is out for at least 3 to 4 weeks with a bad hamstring.
A glimmer of hope next week is the return of Oguro from crocked status. He will start from the bench against high flying Vissel Kobe.
Former Verdy man and current Red Takahito Soma got an offer to play for CSKA Moscow. His contract is up after this season but all accounts are that he will be a priority for Urawa in the offseason.
I'll post on the new guys coming in later