An injury time match-winning goal by Kashima Antlers has given the Western Sydney Wanderers a monumental task of qualifying for the round of 16 in the Asian Champions League.
In horrendous conditions, the reigning Asian champions suffered a 2-1 defeat in front of 5 000 hard core Western Sydney fans.
The match was sealed by the Japanese in the 92nd minute with a last ditch effort by Kashima striker, Mu Kanazaki who was rewarded for his relentless attack throughout the game.
The Wanderers began the game with some good attacking football and took the lead in the first quarter with a goal by Nikita Rukavytsya.
The home side held on til the break to keep the score at 1-nil. However, the second half saw the Kashima Antlers take control of the match. The visitors dominated possession and finally broke through the Wanderers defence and levelled the score at the 66th minute. The Wanderers created some half chances at the back end but could not capitalise.
The loss now leaves the Wanderers last in their group and will need to win their next match, and have results go their way to have any chance of qualifying.
Western Sydney’s must win game is against 2013 Asian Champions, Guangzhou Evergrande at Tianhe Stadium in China on May 5.