"I think everyone saw whatever happened on the field today."
In the stadium lobby a couple of hours after the match, the Mito HollyHock club president was holding back what every Mito fan in the stadium was thinking. After a first half of great play by Mito, including a goal by midfielder Suzuki, Mito continued a strategy of strong defense to block out Tokyo's attacks. This came to an end when, in the middle of the second half, as midfielder Biju was jumping for the ball in the penalty area, he lightly bumped Tokyo forward Silva who through himself violently into the ground. A foul was called and there was major protest before the PK took place. J2 goal leader Hulk took the point in the PK, but that wasn't the end of it. Just as Mito prepared to take the ball, Suzuki was sent off with a straight red card for unsportsmanlike language. Nobody in the crowd knew what was going on, and neither did the players or TV announcers, but if anything was said, it was said to himself and not to the official.
Mito played strongly yet defensively with one man down, with two major chances. Both chances were stopped with violent takedowns in the Tokyo penalty area. However, these plays were not called as fouls, drawing incredible ire from the crowd.
With a few minutes to go, Tokyo headed in the winning goal, and the crowd turned ugly. Mito supporters are fairly harsh following Mito losses, but this time the jeers were not directed at offending players but at the officials. Dozens of calls of "bribery" rained down on the field and the players were sent off with 2-3 minutes of "Mito!" chants. I just finished watching the TV replay, and with that angle as well, I honestly don't know what the officials were thinking when they made those 3 calls involving penalty area play, and I can't see why Suzuki was sent off for saying something to himself. Even if just honest mistakes or poor judgment, the result is so disappointing.