Japanese Non-league Football News

JFL - Round 20 (Sunday)
Second half goals from Junya Nitta and Shigeru Suzuki gave JFL leaders Honda FC a vital 2-0 win at Sagawa Kyubin Osaka on Sunday, thereby inflicting defeat upon one of their nearest challengers and consolidating their own position as top dogs. In fact, the league is potentially beginning to turn into a two-horse race, a development brought about by not only Honda's good form and that of Rosso Kumamoto - who stay second thanks to a comfortable and thoroughly unsurprising 3-0 win at lowly Mistubishi Mizushima - but also the failure of any of the other top teams to piece together a good run of results at this stage of the season.

With Tochigi SC having lost on Saturday at Sagawa Printing, the coast was especially clear for Yokogawa Musashino to make their mark on proceedings, but they conceded three times in nine second half minutes to slump to defeat at the hands of a resurgent Sagawa Kyubin Tokyo, who themselves now lie in third on the back of six straight victories. Early season frontrunners YKK AP moved back up to fourth after beating Ryutsu Keizai University, but the fact that this was the Toyama-based outfit's first win in eight games goes some way towards demonstrating how the tables are turned in favour of Honda and Rosso: the fact that such a clearly out-of-form team can still hold on to fourth place suggests that it is going to be hard for anyone to put together a serious challenge.

23 Jul 06 - Sagawa Kyubin Osaka try to break down the Honda FC defence

Sagawa Kyubin Osaka try to break down the Honda FC defence

Elsewhere, FC Ryukyu gained a crucial three points in their battle to avoid a relegation play-off spot, as a 62nd-minute Takashi Seki goal was enough to beat the doomed-looking Honda Lock. But mid-table Sony Sendai achieved the result of the day, as two goals apiece from Shinji Honda and Junpei Murata helped them to a 6-2 thumping of an Arte Takasaki team who have now conceded twelve in three games and seem to be in freefall.

Sun 23 Jul: Arte Takasaki 2-6 Sony Sendai
Sun 23 Jul: Honda Lock 0-1 FC Ryukyu
Sun 23 Jul: Mitsubishi Mizushima 0-3 Rosso Kumamoto
Sun 23 Jul: Ryutsu Keizai University 0-2 YKK AP
Sun 23 Jul: Sagawa Kyubin Osaka 0-2 Honda FC
Sun 23 Jul: Yokogawa Musashino 3-4 Sagawa Kyubin Tokyo

1 Honda FC 47 (+22)
2 Rosso Kumamoto 43 (+19)
3 Sagawa Kyubin Tokyo 39 (+29)
4 YKK AP 39 (+23)
5 Sagawa Kyubin Osaka 39 (+18)
6 Yokogawa Musashino 39 (+12)
7 Tochigi SC 38 (+12)
8 Alo's Hokuriku 34 (+15)
9 Sony Sendai 32 (+8)
10 SC Tottori 23 (+3)
11 Arte Takasaki 22 (-14)
12 JEF Club 19 (-8)
13 FC Kariya 19 (-16)
14 Sagawa Printing 19 (-18)
15 FC Ryukyu 15 (-12)
16 Ryutsu Keizai University 12 (-22)
17 Mitsubishi Mizushima 11 (-35)
18 Honda Lock 9 (-36)

23 Jul 06 - A midfield tussle between Mitsubishi Mizushima and Rosso Kumamoto

A midfield tussle between Mitsubishi Mizushima and Rosso Kumamoto

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