Japanese Non-league Football News

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26th Western Japan Football Tournament
Details here of the 26th Western Japan Football Tournament, of which the first group matches took place in Yamaguchi prefecture on Friday. The competition, which is open to the top two teams in last season's Kyushu, Shikoku, Chugoku and Kansai leagues, is the first real opportunity in the calendar year for fans to assess the likely strengths and weaknesses of some of the top non-league teams during 2007.

The big winners in Friday's games were Chugoku champions Fagiano Okayama, who crashed eight past Nippon Steel Oita and therefore qualify to play on Saturday against FC Mi-o Biwako Kusatsu, late winners over Kamatamare Sanuki. In Group 1, Banditonce Kobe cruised past FC Central Chugoku and will take on V Varen Nagasaki - winners over Nangoku Kochi - in the second game. Full results and fixtures are below.

23 Feb 07 - FC Central Chugoku line up before their loss to Banditonce Kobe

FC Central Chugoku line up before their loss to Banditonce Kobe

Group 1

Fri 23 Feb: Match 1: Banditonce Kobe 6-2 FC Central Chugoku
Fri 23 Feb: Match 2: V Varen Nagasaki 3-1 Nangoku Kochi

Sat 24 Feb: Match 3: Banditonce Kobe - V Varen Nagasaki 2
Sat 24 Feb: Match 4: FC Central Chugoku - Nangoku Kochi

Group 2

Fri 23 Feb: Match 5: Fagiano Okayama 8-1 Nippon Steel Oita
Fri 23 Feb: Match 6: Kamatamare Sanuki 2-3 FC Mi-o Biwako Kusatsu

Sat 24 Feb: Match 7: Fagiano Okayama - FC Mi-o Biwako Kusatsu
Sat 24 Feb: Match 8: Nippon Steel Oita - Kamatamare Sanuki

Sun 25 Feb: Tournament Decider: Winner Match 3 - Winner Match 7
Sun 25 Feb: 3rd / 4th place Decider: Loser Match 3 - Loser Match 7
Sun 25 Feb: 5th / 6th place Decider: Winner Match 4 - Winner Match 8
Sun 25 Feb: 7th / 8th place Decider: Loser Match 4 - Loser Match 8
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JFL News In Brief
... recent JFL friendlies include on Thursday, Sagawa Kyubin SC's 2-0 win over FC Gifu, a 4-0 defeat for Honda FC at the hands of J1 side Oita Trinita, a goalless draw between Sony Sendai and Montedio Yamagata of J2, and a 4-1 win for TDK SC against Japan U18... Friday saw Rosso Kumamoto claim a 2-2 draw with a USA U22 side, while YKK AP ran in a superb 5-1 scoreline against Vissel Kobe...
Regional League News In Brief
... Shikoku League winners Kamatamare Sanuki have released no fewer than nineteen players from their 2006 squad, including former Consadole Sapporo keeper Shogo Ebisawa. New signings include a replacement goalie, Kensuke Horinouchi from Arte Takasaki, midfield duo Nobuho Mikazaki and Kenji Ito from Tohoku League favourites Grulla Morioka and defender Mitsuho Izutani from J2 neighours Ehime FC... in Kansai, 2006 runners-up FC Mio-Biwako Kusatsu have released details of their new signings, who include five college players and 24-year-old midfielder Nobuo Nasu, previously with FC Central Chugoku, Okinawa Kariyushi and most recently JFL side FC Kariya... Matsumoto Yamaga Club in Hokushinetsu have also signed three college players...
JFL Relegation - It's All Completely Clear
Some information has emerged as to how the JFL plan to manage the number of teams in the division for next season, in the light of the decision under specific circumstances to enable teams finishing in the top four of the JFL to gain promotion. There are several possible variations, according to the number of clubs who do succeed in going up to J2, as follows:

If no teams are promoted into J2, the bottom two JFL teams will automatically be relegated and the top two in the Regional League Championship Winners' Play-off promoted in their place. There will also be a Play-off between the 16th JFL team and the third-placed club in the Championship Winners' Play-off.

If one team is promoted into J2, one team will be automatically relegated from the JFL. The top two teams in the Regional Championship Winners' Play-off will be promoted, with a Play-off between the 17th JFL team and the third team in the Championship Winners' Play-off.

If two teams are promoted into J2, the top two teams in the Regional League Championship Winners' Play-off will be promoted, with a Play-off between the bottom JFL team and the third team in the Championship Winners' Play-off.

If three or four teams are promoted into J2, the top three or four teams in the Regional League Championship Winners' Play-off will be promoted in their place and there will simply be no relegation from out of the JFL.
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