Match to Watch, Matchweek 3: J1 newbies Júbilo and Sanga square off

Match to Watch, Matchweek 3: J1 newbies Júbilo and Sanga square off

Júbilo Iwata were champions of J2 last year with Kyoto Sanga right on their heels in second, earning the pair promotion to the Meiji Yasuda J1 League for 2022. Now, in Matchweek 3, the two new top flight clubs are set to square off.

Things have gone swimmingly for Sanga this year. In the season opener, Peter Utaka’s goal delivered them a win over Urawa Reds, then Kosuke Taketomi tallied to draw Cerezo Osaka, an impressive away result to cement a great two-week start for the season.

The dangerous frontline that Sanga envisioned is coming to fruition, with the ageless Utaka’s movement giving defenses fits, Taketomi is adjusting back to J1 with ease and Yuta Toyokawa presenting a threat on the opposite wing. That sits in front of an excellent defense that was the best in J2 a year ago and is showing no issues dealing with the first division with just one goal allowed through two contests.

Júbilo’s start has not been as strong, but they’ve still equipped themselves well. They earned a dramatic draw away to Avispa Fukuoka before suffering a 2-1 defeat to Shimizu S-Pulse. They’ve played well in both contests, showing a bit of fragility against the counterattack, but have been strong on the ball and creating chances of their own.

If there was any worry about the two newly promoted sides making the jump to J1, that is out the window; they are more than up to the challenge.

This week, the two of them meet in Kyoto, where a lively crowd is expected to welcome Sanga. There is excitement around their start to the season and adding more points to their tally this weekend would continue to build fervor among the Sanga faithful. Júbilo, on the other hand, have spent years waiting for a top-flight win.

Will Júbilo get the win they’ve been waiting for? Will Sanga stay undefeated? We’ll find out at SANGA STADIUM by KYOCERA on Matchweek 3.