First-Half JSTATS: Duo of Damião and Yamane star for Frontale

First-Half JSTATS: Duo of Damião and Yamane star for Frontale

The 2021 MEIJI YASUDA J1 LEAGUE has reached the midway point, which means it’s time to look back at the first half of the season. As we do, we turn to J.STATS to see which players put in performances worthy of attention.

Kawasaki Frontale are on top of the table as they look to make it consecutive league titles, and they’ve surged back to first thanks in large part to the outstanding play of two stars.

Leandro Damião, Kawasaki’s top scorer this season, is tied for second in the league’s scoring charts with 12 goals, but what is even more remarkable is the playmaking he’s brought to the table. Not only does he score goals himself, but he has also recorded a league-best eight assists. He has been the driving force behind Frontale's overwhelming attack, directly involved in 20 of their goals. No player in the entire league has played in the opposition’s penalty box more than Damião, and it’s directly related to Frontale’s dominance.

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While Damião gets the job done up front, his teammate Miki Yamane is the league’s most impactful defender by several measures. Yamane is right behind his frontman with seven assists of his own and he’s spent more time in the opposition’s penalty area than any other defender in the league. He has also contributed greatly to the team's rearguard efforts, ranking second in tackles, as he shines both offensively and defensively.

These two stars are emblematic of the two-way dominance from Kawasaki Frontale in 2021 as they search for a fourth league title in five seasons.

(Stats as of July 17, provided by Data Stadium, Inc.)

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