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I Live for J.League: Week 13 27 May 2007

Posted by jlap in J-League, Yokohama FC.
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The J.League season is nearing its halfway point, and its time to focus on the different sides that make this league competitive.

Yokohama FC are expected to be relegated back to J.League 2 this season. Founded after Yokohama Flugels and Yokohama Marinos merged by fans who refused to support the new team, Yokohama FC have struggled to get to this point. As the first professional club in Japan owned by its fans, they do not particularly have a lot of money, and it shows in the makeup of the squad.

Manager Takuya Takagi is a 39-year-old former Japanese international. Captaining the side is 40-year-old former Japanese international Kazuyoshi Miura. Motohiro Yamaguchi, 38, and Norio Omura, 37, also have regular places in the team. This all makes other Japanese internationals Tatsuhiko Kubo, 30, and Daisuke Oku, 31, look like kids in comparison. Add in the foreign contingent of unaccomplished Brazilians: Anderson (via Pogon Szczecin), Gilmar Silva (via Vitoria) and Adriano (via FC Thun); and it genuinely doesn’t look good for this team.

They still battle on, and they picked up their third win of the season yesterday against fellow strugglers Oita Trinita. Miura picked up his second goal of the season and Tomoya Uchida adding the second in their 2-1 win. They still sit bottom with their appalling goal difference of -15, but being 2 points from near safety at this point is still better than many predicted.

Scores: Yokohama FC 2-1 Oita, FC Tokyo 0-1 Grampus, Vissel 2-1 Reysol, Antlers 2-0 Ventforet, JEF Utd 1-2 Gamba (Gamba starting to pull away at the top), Sanfrecce 2-1 S-Pulse, Frontale 1-1 Omiya, Urawa Reds 1-1 Yokohama F. Marinos

Goals in the league since I began tracking (by nationality):
Japan 26
Brazil 16
Norway 2
Côte d’Ivoire 1
South Korea 1

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I Live For the J-League: Week 12 20 May 2007

Posted by jlap in J-League.
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They are nearing the halfway stage of the 2007 J-League season and there is still all to play for.

Gamba Osaka began the weekend on top of the J-League 1 table and defeated surprise package Kashiwa Reysol 2-1 in a turgid affair. Defending champions Urawa Reds moved up to second with a late winner scored by their talismanic striker Washington.

Lower down the table Albirex Niigata and Kashima Antlers could not separate themselves after a 1-1 draw left both sides midtable on 17 points. Oita Trinita pulled themselves out of the relegation zone with a shock 2-0 win over title challengers Kawasaki Frontale. Ueslei helped himself to a hat-trick in Sanfrecce’s 3-1 win over JEF United.

At the bottom, Omiya Arduja defeated Yokohama FC 1-0 in a relegation six-pointer.

Results: Gamba 2-1 Kashiwa, Albirex 1-1 Kashima, Grampus 1-2 Urawa, Oita 2-0 Kawasaki, JEF United 1-3 Sanfrecce, Omiya 1-0 Yokohama FC, Ventforet 0-0 Shimizu, Jubilo 2-3 Vissel, Yokohama F. Marinos 0-1 FC Tokyo

Goals in the league since I began tracking (by nationality):
Brazil 11
Japan 9
Norway 1