J.League Match of the Week: Urawa take aim at the top against Júbilo in global broadcast

J.League Match of the Week: Urawa take aim at the top against Júbilo in global broadcast

Urawa Reds have won the Emperor’s Cup, Super Cup and AFC Champions League in the last three years. Now, they’re hoping to add the Meiji Yasuda J1 League title to their haul and that continues when they meet up with Júbilo Iwata on Sunday at 14:00 JST in a match that will be shown live on JLeague.co and broadcasters around the world.

The Reds currently sit in fourth place, six points off the top. They’ve won three in a row thanks to an attack that has scored nine goals over that time.

Thiago Santana was signed in the winter to provide some goal scoring punch to a team that lacked it a year ago and he is delivering. The striker is tied for third in the league with seven goals and has been a force up front not just scoring, but occupying defenses so his teammates could get involved.

No other Urawa player has more than two goals, but an astounding seven have scored twice and three more have found the back of the net once. Thiago Santana may be their star, but they are truly a total team attack.

The Reds defense is showing signs of finding its form from a year ago, too. While they are not the league leading back line from 2023, they notched their first clean sheet since April 7 on Wednesday and if they continue to take steps in defense then they very well may win their first J1 title since 2006.

Things haven’t been as bright in Iwata, where Júbilo are in the relegation fight. They are currently clear of the drop zone, but only by three points and would welcome a string of results that put them into safety by mid-summer.

Júbilo got off to a solid start to the season and their performances haven’t waned too much in recent weeks, but the results have. They’ve lost three in a row, but two of those have come by a single goal. Previous to that they drew AFC Champions League finalist Yokohama F·Marinos and beat second place FC Machida Zelvia, all while featuring the league’s leading scorer Ryo Germain.

Júbilo are not a bad team in the slightest. They’ve simply had some results go against them, dropping them into a position in the table beneath their quality. A few wins and they’ll be right back into the middle of the table, where they belong.

Will Júbilo begin their needed run of results against the Reds? Or will Urawa continue their assault on the top of the table?

Tune in on Sunday and find out on a live worldwide broadcast.