J.League Match Preview: Kashima look to stay on top against Cerezo

J.League Match Preview: Kashima look to stay on top against Cerezo

The Meiji Yasuda J1 League season is only a week old, but Kashima Antlers have already sent the rest of the competition a message. They went away to Nagoya Grampus and walked away with a dominant 3-0 win, putting them top of the table and making clear that they are ready for a title run.

Now, they get to protect that top spot in their home opener as they square off with Cerezo Osaka on Saturday at 15:00 JST in a match that will be streamed live on JLeague.co.

Hayato Nakama led the way for Kashima in the opener, scoring twice, while Aleksandar Čavrić scored on his debut as Antlers looked like a team that is ready to make good on their dream of competing for the league crown.

It wasn’t quite as smooth for Cerezo in their opener, but goals from Capixaba and Shunta Tanaka were enough to earn them a 2-2 draw with FC Tokyo. The Sakura made a slew of big signings in the winter so it will take some time for the team to gel, but there were flashes of greatness in that first match and their high-end talent will make them a big threat in Kashima.

You’re going to want to tune in on J.League.co for this one as Antlers look to stay on the summit, while dangerous Cerezo would love nothing more than to make a statement of their own as they look to force their way into the conversation of top teams.