Barcelona topples Jubilo Iwata

Spanish giant Barcelona whipped former J-League champions Jubilo Iwata 3-0 in Shizuoka, while in Tokyo Kashima held a second-string Valencia to a goalless draw.

Spanish football powerhouse Barcelona whipped former J-League champions Jubilo Iwata 3-0 in Shizuoka, central Japan, to wind up their two-game pre-season series.

The writing was on the wall for the J-League side early on when Brazilian striker Ronaldinho's shot hit the bar as early as the third minute.

And it was Ronaldinho who, in the 29th minute, dribbled past Toshihiro Hattori, Hideto Suzuki and Takahiro Yamanishi to set up Swedish forward Henrik Larsson for the opener.

Larsson bagged his second in the 36th minute when he jumped for a header at a corner delivered by Dutch defender Giovanni van Bronckhorst.

In the second period, Itawa started brightly when their Brazilian striker Gral made a diving header from a Hiroshi Nanami cross in the 48th minute, but the effort went wide.

Barcelona managed to add to their tally before the end with Ronaldinho once more producing a skillful pass to Luis Garcia, who scored with a shot in the 63rd minute.

Barcelona ended their tour of Japan without conceding a goal, following their 5-0 thrashing of Kashima Antlers on Sunday.

In Tokyo, Kashima held a second-string Valencia to a goalless draw, condemning the Spanish side to end their two-game friendly series without a win. Valencia suffered a humiliating 5-2 loss to Alvilex Niigata on Sunday.
Source AFP