OSAKA, Japan — Sanfrecce defender Tsukasa Shiotani scored the lone goal in the second half on Saturday as Hiroshima beat Cerezo Osaka 1-0, spoiling the J-League debut of Uruguay forward Diego Forlan.
Shiotani scored with a left-footed volley from close range in the 71st minute as Sanfrecce began their title defense with a hard-fought road win.
The 34-year-old Forlan signed with Osaka for a reported $5.8 million for the 2014 season, a record for the J-League.
Forlan's signing has generated renewed interest in the Osaka club and a near-capacity crowd was on hand at the 50,000-seat Nagai Stadium to witness his first game.
Forlan's first chance came in the 27th minute when he took a pass from Yoichiro Kakitani but his effort from 35 yards sailed over the crossbar. He also had two indirect free kicks that were blocked by the wall before coming off with 10 minutes remaining.
Also Saturday, Milivoje Novakovic scored a late winner as Shimizu S-Pulse came from being down 2-1 to beat Nagoya Grampus 3-2, while Davi scored twice to lead Kashima Antlers to a 4-0 defeat of Ventforet Kofu.
Roger Gaucho scored late as Albirex Niigata beat Vegalta Sendai 2-1, spoiling the debut of former Australia coach Graham Arnold. Yohei Toyoda netted a pair of goals to lead Sagan Tosu to a 5-0 thrashing of newly-promoted Tokushima Vortis.