Socceroo Nathan Burns’ struggles at FC Tokyo got worse overnight after he was sacrificed after barely 21 minutes in their 3-1 J.League Cup loss at Jubilo Iwata.
Tokyo had goalkeeper Takuo Okubo sent off after 18 minutes, leaving the visitors with a dilemma which led to the Australian being replaced.
Burns, who won the 2015-16 Johnny Warren medal, hasn’t played one minute in the J.League this season.
His only club game-time this year was 61 minutes against Vegalta Sendai in the J.League Cup last month.
The J.League Cup is a group competition and not knockout, so there will likely be further opportunities for Burns to play.
Goalkeeper Takuo Okubo was sent off 18 minutes into his #FCTokyo debut, Nathan Burns subbed/sacrificed 21 minutes into his return to action.— On the Gas (@OnTheGas1999) April 26, 2017
Elsewhere, Mitchell Duke put in a full shift as Shimizu S-Pulse lost 3-1 at Vegalta Sendai.
In Europe, Golgol Mebrahtu was a 46th minute substitute as Mlada Boleslav failed to reach the Czech Cup final, losing 2-0 to Opava in the semis.
In the Belgian Europa League play-offs, Mat Ryan played a full game but was beaten from the penalty spot as Genk drew 1-1 at Eupen.