Mito played in its first scoreless draw of the year as visiting Fukuoka played likely the same style that had the Emperor's Cup matchup go on for extra time. Fukuoka's defense match the tenacity of Mito's albeit with different styles. Fukuoka tended to press beyond the penalty area to prevent shots but risk break away plays, while Mito allowed Fukuoka to get dangerously close but block away any shots taken and prevent clear attacks. The result was an exciting and close match that cooled down in the second half as fans realized the scoring chances would not be realized.
I worked the away gate for this match and it must be said that Fukuoka's fans are among the worst I have encountered. At every Mito possession or kickoff, the Fukuoka fans made hateful noise in an attempt to disrupt Mito's concentration, going so far as to stop supporting chants and songs to switch to negative noise as soon as Mito took the ball. Somewhat disturbing was the reaction to Mito defensive midfielder Biju, who is a black Brazilian. Several Fukuoka fans hurled racist insults and made monkey sounds at him whenever close and having ball possession. It didn't seem to affect his play but it made a bad impression on me. Before the match I made some positive comments about the team and fans for some sort of Fukuoka TV camera crew, and if I had known they would have that sort of activity, I'd surely not have given any support.