Nagoya Grampus Eight are the surprise table-toppers after the opening two rounds of the J-League, following their 2-0 victory away at Ventforet Kofu last weekend. Sef Vergoossen’s men are yet to concede a goal and they’ll look to continue their good form at home against Albirex Niigata.
Shimizu S-Pulse are hot on the heels of Nagoya, having defeated JEF United 3-1 in Chiba last weekend. They’ll look to maintain their winning streak with a win over Kashiwa Reysol at Nihondaira Stadium.
Defending champions Urawa Reds drew 2-2 at a freezing Big Swan Stadium, conceding two goals in the final two minutes to hosts Albirex Niigata. Urawa will look to make amends at home to Ventforet Kofu this weekend, although they will no doubt have one eye on their upcoming Asian Champions League clash with 2005 A-League winners Sydney FC.
The match of the round last weekend took place at a packed Mitsuzawa Stadium, as Yokohama FC and Yokohama F. Marinos clashed in the first Yokohama derby since 1998. In emotional scenes in Japan’s “second city,” Yokohama FC triumphed 1-0 over their cross-town rivals, despite being outplayed for much of the match.
The Togel Online match was significant for the fact that it was the first time that Yokohama FC – a club started by disgruntled Yokohama Flügels fans, opposed Yokohama F. Marinos – a club that was created by the sudden merger of Yokohama Flügels and Yokohama Marinos in 1998.
This weekend Yokohama FC make the short trip to neighbours Kawasaki Frontale – who are also on Asian Champions League duty next week, when they take on Bangkok University at home.
JEF United prop up the J-League standings at this early stage, and it looks like it will be another season of disappointment for fans of the Chiba-based outfit.
Japan National Teams
Under-22 Olympic Team
Yasuharu Sorimachi’s side recorded a second consecutive victory on its quest to qualify for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, however they once again disappointed, despite beating Malaysia 2-1 at a rain-soaked Petaling Jaya Stadium.
Goals from FC Tokyo forward Sota Hirayama and Kashiwa Reysol striker Tadanari Ri were enough to see off the hosts, who pulled a late goal back through Khyril Muhymeen. Japan’s next match is against Syria at the National Stadium in Tokyo on March 28.
Japan National Women’s Team
The Japan National Women’s Team beat Mexico 2-0 at the National Stadium in Tokyo, in the first leg of their World Cup qualification playoff.
Goals from Homare Sawa and Aya Miyama have put Japan in a commanding position, ahead of the return leg at Nemesio Diez Stadium in Toluca on March 17.
Lettuce get it on
I’m a great believer in animal rights; I believe they have the right to fit nicely on a bun.
My attitude has undoubtedly softened since I witnessed a horrific dogfight. In the wife’s defence, the barmaid should never have called last orders.
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Manchester City need a result at Middlesbrough to avoid being dragged into a real scrap at the wrong end of the table. The Boro do have one eye on Monday’s FA Cup replay; I’m considering getting involved with another psycho at 10/3.
I feel a real connection with the animal loving McCartney clan. I could never understand why Stella appeared unhappy with Heather; I’d have thought the prospect of a decent burger for dinner would have been a relief. I guess the waiting time proved an annoyance. There’s nothing annoying about the 11/10 for a Reading win over Portsmouth.
Roman Abramovich is another high profile figure to have recently split from his other half. I imagine Roman’s wife won’t be too upset though, she’s in line for a massive payout; although Frank Lampard has denied being a part of any deal.
The future of Lampard and Terry is under a cloud thanks to a proposed salary cap. Chelsea are considering introducing a £120,000 a week ceiling; I think the builder’s ripping them off. Chelsea will demolish Sheffield United at 1/5.
Call me an overly optimistic, frustrated ornithologist, but I wish that all birds were as easy to get on their backs as the Robben. A 3-0 Chelsea win should be dived on at a more punter friendly 7/1.
I was delighted to hear the news that Michael Owen is up and running again. Only Michael and his local bookmaker were more excited. I’m quite literally beside myself with the 6/4 for a Charlton win over Newcastle.
Fulham may have a fantastic record at the Cottage, but they get stopped more than Pete Doherty on the road. Wigan have the three points in the bag at 5/4.
Arsenal have appeared to have based their style of play on me. It’s pretty to look at, but there’s a real lack of penetration. If forced, I’d suggest a win for the Gunners at Goodison Park, but the skinny odds of 5/4 are a little bit like Scotland, you’re better off keeping out of it.
The wife had to meet up with the doctor last night, Martens, I think his name was. Backing the Villa to draw with Liverpool at 12/5 will cover the cost of a big bottle of Lucozade; I’ve got a raging thirst.
I must express my sense of disappointment with Anton Ferdinand. The manager was never going to believe he was visiting his grandma; only Wayne Rooney can sell that line without arousing suspicion. I’m putting my cash down on Blackburn to beat West Ham at 8/11.
Rooney may well be partnered by overrated midfielder / overrated forward Alan Smith for the visit of Bolton, but United can still be backed with real confidence at 1/3.
Ronaldo looks a great shout to open the scoring at 11/2. The procumbent winger is second only to Drogba in the race for the golden boot; that’s half decent for a lad who only plays a tiny proportion of the game in an upright position.
Here’s an adage for Martin Jol. ‘You can’t catch fire if you throw away matches’. Spurs would definitely have seen off Chelsea if Lennon and Berbatov weren’t sacrificed to appease the God of ‘bus-parking’. Jol can make amends by sending out a decent team to beat Watford at 1/2.
The weekend accer is so thought provoking; I’m actually considering turning into a vegetarian. Of course that’s dependent on finding a morally loose non-meat eater with exceptionally low standards. Reading, Spurs, Wigan, Blackburn and Charlton are the selections, the payout is a beefy 26/1.