Japanese Non-league Football News

Kanto League Division 2 Team List 2007
English name - Japanese name - 2006 finishing position

Club Dragons - クラブドラゴンズ - Ibaraki Prefectural League
Furukawa Electrics Chiba - 古河電工千葉 - 3rd
Hanno Bruder - 飯能ブルーダー - 8th, Division 1
Kanagawa Teachers - 神奈川県教員 - 6th
MSDF Atsugi Marcus - MSDF 厚木マーカス - 7th, Division 1
Nirasaki Astros - 韮崎アストロス - 4th
Ome FC - 青梅FC - 5th
Yonoshu-kai - 与野蹴魂会 - Saitama Prefectural League

Kanto League Division 1 Team List 2007
English name - Japanese name - 2006 finishing position

FC Machida Zelvia - FC町田ゼルビア - Winners, Division 2
Hitachi Tochigi Uva - 日立栃木・UVASC - Runners-up, Division 2
Luminozo Sayama - ルミノッソ狭山 - Runners-up
Saitama SC - 埼玉SC - 4th
Toho Titanium - 東邦チタニウム - 6th
Toshiba Fuchu - TFSC - 5th
Yaita SC - 矢板SC - 3rd
YSCC - YSCC - Champions
And Tochigi SC's New Name Is...
... not yet decided. As reported here on JNFN some months ago, J-League hopefuls Tochigi SC indicated that they would be seeking suggestions from supporters as to a new club name which would serve to inspire them in making the step up from the JFL.

However, Tochigi officals have recently confirmed that for the 2007 season they will keep the existing name and will instead look to make a decision in the autumn with the intention of making a change for 2008. It is believed that a shortlisting process will identify five candidates in the summer, including the possibility of retaining long-term the current moniker.
Grulla Snap Up International Keeper
Tohoku League Division 1 runners-up Grulla Morioka have announced the startling signing of 21-year-old Taiwanese international keeper Lu Kun-Chi in what is believed to be the first instance of a player from that country moving to play abroad, never mind in Japan. As a teenager, Lu participated in the Asian qualification tournaments for both the Olympics and the World Cup and is nicknamed "the Taiwanese Buffon".

The transfer to Grulla from the China Steel club has come about due to the increasing Japanese influence on football in Taiwan, where the national team is now coached by experienced former Kawasaki Frontale boss Toshiaki Imai. In the summer of 2005, ex-Jubilo Iwata coach Masakazu Suzuki visited the island to deliver a series of lectures and to hold a number of trials for promising young players.

30 Dec 06 - Yer man Lu

Yer man Lu

Shortly afterwards, Lu went to Japan himself for trials with Yokohama FC and JEF United and despite being rejected by both clubs returned for a further test at Yokohama F Marinos. In the end, Lu has finally managed to arrange a contract beginning in April 2007 with the fourth-tier Grulla, who are hoping to capitalise on the success of local rivals TDK Akita to reach the JFL and then achieve their long-term goal of a J-League place in 2010.
JFL Transfer News
Rosso Kumamoto have announced the extension until 31st January 2008 of their loan deal with Shimizu S-Pulse striker Shinji Suzuki... defender Takayoshi Toda and forward Keigo Kamata have joined SC Tottori from Shonan Bellmare and Hannan University respectively.
Banditonce Squad Clearout
After the disappointment of their dismal showing in the Regional League Championship Winners' Play-off tournament, Banditonce Kobe have announced that no fewer than nine of their squad members have been let go at the end of their contracts. Goalkeeper Taiji Furuta returns to J2 side Tokushima Vortis following his loan spell, but the other eight will all have to find new deals elsewhere.

They are defensive pair Keita Fukuda and Kim Myon Hi; midfield players Kenki Tsuyama, Shohei Kamada - formerly with Tokushima - and Yasuharu Otsuka; and finally forwards Mitsutoshi Watada, Hideyuki Yoshizawa and ex-Sanfrecce Hiroshima and Avispa Fukuoka man Kazuyoshi Matsunaga.
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