- Mito Hollyhock v Kataller Toyama
- Thespa Kusatsu Gunma v Gainare Tottori
- Fagiano Okayama v Giravanz Kitakyushu
- Ehime FC v Matsumoto Yamaga
- V-Varen Nagasaki v Gamba Osaka
- Consadole Sapporo v Tochigi SC
- Yokohama FC v Tokushima Vortis
- Vissel Kobe v FC Gifu
- Avispa Fukuoka v Montedio Yamagata
- Roasso Kumamoto v JEF United
- Kyoto Sanga v Tokyo Verdy
Matchday 2 questions
Who will win the “anagram derby”*? – Kyoto looked very impressive going forward in the post Atsutaka Nakamura-era, and they were very unfortunate to leave Banpaku with only a point. Tokyo Verdy were wasteful last week and paid the price as Hisashi Jogo’s header gave Avispa Fukuoka a win at the Ajinomoto Stadium. Verdy will hope that they can survive the second game of Yasu Miura’s suspension without suffering another defeat.
How will Gamba fare on the road? – Endo and co. head to Nagasaki to face V-Varen in what will be the Nagasaki club’s first ever home J.League game. Nagasaki were moments away from a debut win last week in Okayama and they will go into this game full of confidence to make this a tricky assignment for Gamba. However, if Gamba want to state their title aspirations then this would be a good time & place to do so. To win J2, teams will have to go places like Nagasaki, Tokushima, Gifu etc and win. It will be an interesting afternoon in Nagasaki.
Who can follow up their first day wins? – Kataller Toyama, Avispa Fukuoka & Consadole Sapporo all recorded impressive away wins on the opening day, and all three teams have a good chance to build on their wins. Kataller head to Ibaraki to face Mito Hollyhock while Avispa host a Montedio Yamagata side who suffered a 3-1 defeat at Ehime and appear to be stuck in a downward spiral that started last year. Sapporo won at JEF United thanks to Uchimura’s injury time strike and will look to keep their momentum going when they welcome Tochigi SC to Hokkaido. All three teams will be looking to have a 100% record come Sunday evening.
Can Giravanz get back on track? – The Yellows suffered a home defeat on the opening day against last year’s strugglers Kataller Toyama and will look to get their first win when they travel to Fagiano Okayama. Fagiano were tipped by many to be dark horses for a play-off spot and will be tough opponents for a Kitakyushu side that are new to each other and need time to gel. The core of last year’s team have left Giravanz (mostly to Tokyo Verdy) and so the longer they remain winless, the more difficult it becomes to get themselves together.
Will Jun Suzuki get his first JEF win? – By all accounts, JEF deserved their defeat against Consadole Sapporo at the Fukuari last week. Last year they really should have been promoted but they had brain lapses and moments of madness against teams from the lower reaches of the table and I expect Roasso to be down the wrong end of the table this year. JEF need to get a win quickly in order to settle Suzuki in and to placate the JEF fans. Roasso lost their opener at home to Gainare Tottori and will be anxious to get points on the board themselves. Could be a tense afternoon down in in mid-Kyushu.
* “anagram derby” is copyright of J.Soccer Magazine!