Cerezo and Sanfrecce ready to clash in 2022 J.League YBC Levain Cup Final

Cerezo and Sanfrecce ready to clash in 2022 J.League YBC Levain Cup Final

The 2022 J.League YBC Levain Cup will be decided on Saturday when Cerezo Osaka and Sanfrecce Hiroshima clash at the Japan National Stadium.

The two dominant clubs in this year’s cup have advanced to the final, replete with spectacular attacks that are poised to put on a show in the competition’s ultimate match.

Cerezo got here after making their way out of Group A, throttling Shonan Bellmare, 5-1, in the play-off stage, overcoming Kawasaki Frontale on away goals in the quarter-finals, and putting up another 5-1 scoreline to dispatch Urawa Reds in the semi-finals.

Sanfrecce’s route was similar, coming through Group B, besting Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo in the play-off, blasting a very good Yokohama F·Marinos side, 5-2, in the quarter-finals, and then squeezing past Avispa Fukuoka in the semis.

The key for both teams in making their way to the final has been unstoppable attacks. Cerezo have scored 27 goals in the competition, tops in the tournament. Sanfrecce have put 25 into the net, which is second-best. Meanwhile, no other team scored more than 18 goals in the competition.

All of that sets the stage for a final that is sure to be full of fireworks, but also one fueled by painful histories.

Cerezo advanced to the final a year ago, but they were bested by Nagoya Grampus in a brutal finish at the final hurdle. They will want to avenge that loss and hoist the cup for only the second time in their club’s history.

Sanfrecce's cup heartbreak is even more longstanding and pronounced, though, as the Viola aim to win the tournament for the first time after a pair of close losses in 2010 and 2014. They are also coming off a shootout loss last weekend to second-tier Ventforet Kofu in the Emperor's Cup final, making this a compelling chance at redemption in their very next game.

One of these clubs is going to reign supreme at the National Stadium and wash away previous heartbreak, but will it be the Sakura or Viola who hoist the trophy?

Tune in and find out on Saturday, as the J.League International YouTube channel brings all global fans the final live, free, and without interruption.