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The J1 opening day is around the corner! Let’s look at the key players of all teams! (Shimizu, Sendai, Sapporo)

Fri, 21 Feb 2020 - 21:00 JST
The J1 opening day is around the corner! Let’s look at the key players of all teams! (Shimizu, Sendai, Sapporo)

The 2020 MEIJI YASUDA J1 League kicks off on February 21.
Ahead of the opening day, let’s look at the key player of all 18 teams.

This third installment looks at Shimizu S-Pulse, Vegalta Sendai and Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo, the clubs that finished between 12th and 10th places last season.

■Shimizu S-Pulse
Achievements in 2019
J1: 12th place
Levain Cup: Group stage

・Player to watch
FW 23 Teerasil Dangda
Thailand’s hero has earned more than 100 caps for his country, and his excellent skills and physical strength enable him to support his teammates as well as to deliver accurate shots. He played for Sanfrecce two years ago and in Hiroshima scored six goals.

■Vegalta Sendai
Achievements in 2019
J1:11th place
Levain Cup: Playoff stage

・Player to watch
DF 23 Simão Mate
A strong center back from Mozambique, Simão Mate has a wide range of defensive qualities. He can also play in the midfield and his strength in the air makes it difficult to beat him on high balls. He was appointed team captain for this season.

■Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo
Achievements in 2019
J1:10th place
Levain Cup: Runners-up

・Player to watch
MF 18 Chanathip
The Thai star features all-round offensive skills: great dribbling, passing and shooting. Despite being less than 160cm tall, his magical playstyle often overwhelms even the strongest defenders. He is a crucial part of Sapporo’s attack and a lot will depend on his performance.