Kawasaki Frontale captain Kengo Nakamura sees the upcoming AFC Champions League as an opportunity for his side to surprise opponents as they look to surpass their club-best quarterfinal finish in 2007.
After earning a direct seed to the group stage through their third-place finish in last year’s MEIJI YASUDA J.League Championship, Toru Oniki’s men will face Suwon Bluewings, Guangzhou Evergrande, and Eastern SC.
“This will be our fifth time in the tournament but we’ve only made it to the quarterfinals, so first we have to make it through the group stage,” Nakamura said. “It’s not easy to contest the ACL alongside the J1 League, but it’s a good opportunity for both the players and the club to improve.
“In 2014 I felt as though teams in Asia aren’t familiar with our playing style. If we do our job correctly I don’t think there’s a team we can’t win against so I’m excited to see how far we can progress.”
Frontale’s will open their campaign at home on Wednesday against Suwon Bluewings.