J2 title chase heats up as Consadole lose second straight

J2 title chase heats up as Consadole lose second straight

Four teams remain in contention for the 2016 MEIJI YASUDA J2 League title after an eventful set of Round 38 fixtures on Sunday.

Roasso Kumamoto handed leaders Consadole Sapporo their first losing streak of the season thanks to goals from Koki Kiyotake and Ryuichi Hirashige. 

The result saw the visitors close out October with just one win from five fixtures, with second-place Matsumoto Yamaga just three points behind after a 1-0 win at Montedio Yamagata.

With third-place Shimizu S-Pulse having won their match on Saturday, Cerezo Osaka failed to stay on pace after drawing 2-2 against Mito Hollyhock. 

It was the third straight draw for Kiyoshi Okuma’s men, who hope to avenge their 2015 J1 Promotion Playoff Final loss this year.

In a match with significant implications for the relegation battle, Giravanz Kitakyushu escaped last place with a 2-1 win over FC Gifu, who now occupy the bottom spot. 

The Kyushu side now sit in the J2-J3 Promotion-Relegation Playoff spot and are one point behind Zweigen Kanazawa and safety.