Kashiwa Reysol win through to AFC Champions League Group H

CENTRAL Coast Mariners will face J-League outfit Kashiwa Reysol in the 2013 AFC Champions League Group Stage after the Chiba-based Club defeated Gamba Osaka 1-0 in Japan’s Emperor’s Cup Final on Tuesday afternoon.

CENTRAL Coast Mariners will face J-League outfit Kashiwa Reysol in the 2013 AFC Champions League Group Stage after the Chiba-based Club defeated Gamba Osaka 1-0 in Japan-s Emperor-s Cup Final on Tuesday afternoon.

Hirofumi Watanabe-s 35th minute goal was all that separated the two teams at Tokyo-s National Stadium.

Kashiwa participated in the 2012 version of Asia-s top club competition, making it through to the second round of the prestigious annual tournament.

Indeed, the “Sun Kings” only bowed out of the competition to eventual AFC Champions League winners Ulsan Hyundai of the Korea Republic in the round of 16, losing 3-2 at the Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium.

Kashiwa's triumph in Tokyo means the men from Chiba join the Mariners, as well as Korea's Suwon Bluewings and China's Guizhou Renhe in Group H of the 2013 AFC Champions League.

Central Coast Mariners commence their 2013 continental campaign in Gosford against Suwon Bluewings on Wednesday 27 February, and will travel to Japan for matchday 2 against Kashiwa on Wednesday 13 March.

Kashiwa Reysol play their football out of the 16,000 capacity Kashiwa Soccer Stadium and finished the 2012 domestic season in sixth place. The Club were crowned J-League Champions in 2011.