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The 2014 J.League Division 1 season was the 49th season of top-flight football in Japan, and the 22nd since the establishment of the J.League in 1993. The season began on 1 March and ended on 8 December. Sanfrecce Hiroshima were the defending champions.

J.League Division 1
Season2014
ChampionsGamba Osaka
2nd J.League title
2nd Japanese title
RelegatedOmiya Ardija
Cerezo Osaka
Tokushima Vortis
Champions LeagueGamba Osaka
Urawa Red Diamonds
Kashima Antlers
Matches played306
Goals scored774 (2.53 per match)
Top goalscorerYoshito Ōkubo (18 goals)
Highest attendance56,758
Reds vs Gamba
Lowest attendance0
Reds vs S-Pulse
Average attendance17,240
2013
2015

Due to Japan's participation in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, there was an extended break to allow for preparation after the 14th-week matches on 17 and 18 May, with the league resuming on 15 July for four clubs who participated in the 2014 AFC Champions League to play rescheduled 12th-week matches, and 19 July for other 14 clubs.[1]

2014 saw the league played via a home and away system over a single season for the last time until at least 2020. From 2015 the league will revert to an Apertura and Clausura system, with a multi-team play-off 'super stage' to decide the champions, similar to the format used when the J.League began.[2]

The league was won by Gamba Osaka, who won their second J.League title following a 0–0 away draw against Tokushima Vortis. They became the second league champions (after Kashiwa Reysol) to win the first division after being promoted as second division champions.

ClubsEdit

18 teams compete in this year's competition. Both Gamba Osaka and Vissel Kobe return to J1 after a single season outside the top flight; they finished as the J.League Division 2 champions and runners-up, respectively. Tokushima Vortis, who finished fourth in the regular season and won the promotion playoff, will make their top-flight debut, becoming the first club from Shikoku to do so. Those three teams replaced Oita Trinita, Shonan Bellmare and Júbilo Iwata; Júbilo were relegated from J1 for the first time after twenty seasons in the top tier, while Bellmare and Trinita were bumped down after cameo appearances in J1.

Club Name Coach Home Town(s) Stadium Capacity Note(s)
Albirex Niigata   Masaaki Yanagishita Niigata & Seirō, Niigata Big Swan Stadium 42,300
Kashima Antlers   Toninho Cerezo Kashima, Ibaraki Kashima Soccer Stadium 40,728
Omiya Ardija   Hiroki Shibuya Omiya, Saitama NACK5 Stadium 15,500
Cerezo Osaka   Yuji Okuma Osaka Nagai Stadium 47,816 2014 AFC Champions League participant
(as 2013 J.League fourth-placed)
Yokohama F. Marinos   Yasuhiro Higuchi Yokohama, Kanagawa & Yokosuka, Kanagawa Nissan Stadium 72,327 2014 AFC Champions League participant
(as 2013 J.League runners-up)
Kawasaki Frontale   Yahiro Kazama Kawasaki, Kanagawa Todoroki Athletics Stadium 26,232 2014 AFC Champions League participant
(as 2013 J.League Third placed team)
Gamba Osaka   Kenta Hasegawa Suita, Osaka Osaka Expo '70 Stadium 21,000 Promoted from J.League Division 2 in 2013
Nagoya Grampus   Akira Nishino Nagoya, Aichi Mizuho Athletic Stadium 27,000
Urawa Red Diamonds   Mihailo Petrović Urawa, Saitama Saitama Stadium 63,700
Kashiwa Reysol   Nelsinho Baptista Kashiwa, Chiba Kashiwa Soccer Stadium 15,900
Shimizu S-Pulse   Katsumi Oenoki Shizuoka IAI Stadium Nihondaira 20,339
Sagan Tosu   Megumu Yoshida Tosu, Saga Tosu Stadium 24,490
Sanfrecce Hiroshima   Hajime Moriyasu Hiroshima Hiroshima Big Arch 50,000 2014 AFC Champions League participant
(as 2013 J.League winners)
FC Tokyo   Massimo Ficcadenti Tokyo Ajinomoto Stadium 49,970
Tokushima Vortis   Shinji Kobayashi All cities/towns in Tokushima Pocarisweat Stadium 20,441 Promoted from J.League Division 2 in 2013
(through a play-off system)
Vegalta Sendai   Susumu Watanabe Sendai, Miyagi Yurtec Stadium 19,694
Ventforet Kofu   Hiroshi Jofuku Kofu, Yamanashi Yamanashi Chuo Bank Stadium 17,000
Vissel Kobe   Ryo Adachi Kobe, Hyōgo Misaki Park Stadium 30,132 Promoted from J.League Division 2 in 2013

Foreign playersEdit

Club Player 1 Player 2 Player 3 Asian Player Non-Visa Foreign Type-C Contract[3]
Albirex Niigata   Léo Silva   Rafael Silva   Lee Myung-Jae   Song Ju-Hun
Kashima Antlers   Davi   Jorge Wagner   Luís Alberto   Caio
Omiya Ardija   Carlinhos Paraiba   Dragan Mrđa   Zlatan Ljubijankić   Cho Won-hee
Cerezo Osaka   Cacau   Kim Seong-jun   Diego Forlán   Kim Jin-Hyeon   Gu Sung-Yun
Yokohama F. Marinos   Fabio   Rafinha
Kawasaki Frontale   Jeci   Paulinho   Renato   An Byong-Jun
Gamba Osaka   Lins   Patric   Oh Jae-Suk
Nagoya Grampus   Leandro Domingues   Régis   Danilson Córdoba   Joshua Kennedy   Gustavo
Urawa Red Diamonds   Márcio Richardes
Kashiwa Reysol   Dudu   Dudu   Leandro   Kim Chang-Soo
Shimizu S-Pulse   Dejan Jaković   Calvin Jong-a-Pin   Milivoje Novaković   Lee Ki-Je   Bueno
Sagan Tosu   Choi Sung-Keun   Kim Min-Hyeok   Kim Min-Woo
Sanfrecce Hiroshima   Mihael Mikić   Byeon Jun-Byum   Park Hyung-Jin   Hwang Seok-Ho
FC Tokyo   Edu   Michele Canini
Ventforet Kofu   Cristiano   Gilsinho   Marquinhos Paraná   Irfan Bachdim   Thiago Quirino
Vegalta Sendai   Ramon Lopez   Wilson   Ryang Yong-Gi
Vissel Kobe   Fabio Simplicio   Marquinhos   Pedro Júnior   Jung Woo-Young
Tokushima Vortis   Adriano   Alex   Esteven   Kim Jong-min   Lee Yon-Jick   Son Se-Hwang

Managerial changesEdit

Team Outgoing manager Manner of departure Incoming manager
Vegalta Sendai   Graham Arnold Mutual consent   Susumu Watanabe
Cerezo Osaka   Ranko Popović Mutual consent   Marco Pezzaiuoli
Shimizu S-Pluse   Afshin Ghotbi Mutual consent   Katsumi Oenoki
Sagan Tosu   Yoon Jung-Hwan Sacked   Megumu Yoshida
Omiya Ardija   Kiyoshi Okuma Sacked   Hiroki Shibuya
Cerezo Osaka   Marco Pezzaiuoli Sacked   Yuji Okuma

League tableEdit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation
1 Gamba Osaka (C) 34 19 6 9 59 31 +28 63 Qualification for 2015 AFC Champions League Group stage[a]
2 Urawa Red Diamonds 34 18 8 8 52 32 +20 62
3 Kashima Antlers 34 18 6 10 64 39 +25 60
4 Kashiwa Reysol 34 17 9 8 48 40 +8 60 Qualification for 2015 AFC Champions League Third qualifying round[a]
5 Sagan Tosu 34 19 3 12 41 33 +8 60
6 Kawasaki Frontale 34 16 7 11 56 43 +13 55
7 Yokohama F. Marinos 34 14 9 11 37 29 +8 51
8 Sanfrecce Hiroshima 34 13 11 10 44 37 +7 50
9 FC Tokyo 34 12 12 10 47 33 +14 48
10 Nagoya Grampus 34 13 9 12 47 48 −1 48
11 Vissel Kobe 34 11 12 11 49 50 −1 45
12 Albirex Niigata 34 12 8 14 30 36 −6 44
13 Ventforet Kofu 34 9 14 11 27 31 −4 41
14 Vegalta Sendai 34 9 11 14 35 50 −15 38
15 Shimizu S-Pulse 34 10 6 18 42 60 −18 36
16 Omiya Ardija (R) 34 9 8 17 44 60 −16 35 Relegation to 2015 J2 League
17 Cerezo Osaka (R) 34 7 10 17 36 48 −12 31
18 Tokushima Vortis (R) 34 3 5 26 16 74 −58 14
Updated to match(es) played on 8 December 2014. Source: J.League Data
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored.
(C) Champion; (R) Relegated.
Notes:
  1. ^ a b Because Gamba Osaka won the 2014 Emperor's Cup, the group stage spot has been given to third-placed Kashima Antlers, while ACL qualification spot has been awarded to the fourth-placed Kashiwa Reysol.

Positions by roundEdit

Team ╲ Round12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031323334
Gamba Osaka145911141615131415161511161311865787555422222211
Urawa Red Diamonds69551164354122111121111111111111122
Kashima Antlers2111112411237444444433443234433333
Kashiwa Reysol1012141012991096674567989676898998766554
Sagan Tosu1149485535311222211322334553554445
Kawasaki Frontale8141614947889786833333244222345345666
Yokohama F. Marinos33235710111314111215129810111111101010101010101081010777
Sanfrecce Hiroshima6476321242445675576899979887988998
FC Tokyo1012131615121312101012131210109757558786666677889
Nagoya Grampus1276461112151513141113151514141516141414121211121212121211121110
Vissel Kobe8118127331235633566989656677791099101011
Albirex Niigata51010681067778587810111010101111111112111111111112111212
Ventforet Kofu17151513131516141212131416141616161414151515151513131415161313131313
Vegalta Sendai13161717171717171717171714111112131313121213141414151313131414141414
Shimizu S-Pulse4812151614116681010991215121212131312131315171616151615151515
Omiya Ardija1616118101314161616151617171717171717171717171717161514141516161616
Cerezo Osaka15532258911119910131413151615161616161616141717171717171717
Tokushima Vortis18181818181818181818181818181818181818181818181818181818181818181818
Leader and qualification to 2015 AFC Champions League group stage
Qualification to 2015 AFC Champions League group stage
Qualification to 2015 AFC Champions League qualifying play-off
Relegation to 2015 J2 League
Updated to match(es) played on 8 December 2014. Source: J. League Data Site
Note 1: Matchday 12 results for 2014 AFC Champions League Participants (Sanfrecce Hiroshima vs. Yokohama F. Marinos, Cerezo Osaka vs. Kawasaki Frontale), held on 15 July 2014, are included in Matchday 15 ranking. Sanfrecce Hiroshima, Kawasaki Frontale and Cerezo Osaka qualified to the Round of 16 of the 2014 AFC Champions League, in which the First Leg matches overlap with matches for Matchday 12

ResultsEdit

Home \ Away ALB ANT ARD CER FMA FRO GAM GRA RED REY SAG SFR SSP TOK VEG VEN VIS VOR
Albirex Niigata 1–2 2–1 1–0 0–0 3–0 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–2 1–0 0–0 2–1 0–1 1–0 0–0 1–1 1–2
Kashima Antlers 1–2 2–2 0–2 1–0 2–1 2–3 1–2 1–1 2–3 0–1 5–1 2–1 2–2 2–0 1–0 2–3 1–0
Omiya Ardija 2–2 2–1 2–0 2–3 1–3 0–2 1–2 0–2 1–2 1–3 3–3 2–1 1–0 4–0 0–2 0–3 1–3
Cerezo Osaka 0–0 1–4 1–1 2–2 1–2 2–2 1–2 1–0 2–0 0–1 0–1 4–1 0–0 0–1 1–3 1–2 3–1
Yokohama F. Marinos 1–0 1–3 2–0 0–0 2–0 2–0 0–2 0–1 2–2 1–2 1–0 1–0 0–1 0–2 0–0 1–1 3–0
Kawasaki Frontale 1–0 4–1 3–4 5–4 0–3 2–1 1–0 2–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 2–3 0–0 1–1 2–0 2–2 4–0
Gamba Osaka 5–0 0–2 2–1 2–0 2–0 1–0 0–1 0–1 1–2 4–1 1–1 4–0 2–1 1–1 2–0 3–1 3–0
Nagoya Grampus 0–1 2–3 2–1 1–2 1–1 1–1 1–2 1–2 1–1 2–3 2–5 2–3 2–2 0–0 2–0 2–1 1–1
Urawa Red Diamonds 1–0 1–1 4–0 1–0 1–0 1–0 0–2 1–2 3–1 0–1 1–0 1–1 1–0 4–0 0–0 2–2 2–1
Kashiwa Reysol 1–0 1–0 2–2 2–1 0–0 4–1 1–0 0–1 3–2 2–0 0–0 3–1 1–1 0–0 3–0 2–0 2–0
Sagan Tosu 0–2 0–3 1–1 1–0 1–0 0–1 2–0 1–0 1–1 1–0 1–2 2–2 0–2 2–1 2–0 2–1 5–0
Sanfrecce Hiroshima 2–0 0–3 1–1 0–0 1–2 2–1 0–1 4–0 0–2 5–2 1–0 1–1 1–0 2–0 1–1 1–1 3–1
Shimizu S-Pulse 2–1 1–3 2–0 3–0 0–1 0–2 0–3 2–2 1–4 3–0 0–1 1–3 1–3 1–0 0–0 1–1 1–0
FC Tokyo 1–3 1–1 0–1 2–0 1–1 0–4 3–0 0–1 4–4 4–0 2–1 2–1 4–0 3–0 1–1 1–1 4–0
Vegalta Sendai 1–2 0–1 2–2 3–3 1–2 0–0 0–0 3–3 4–2 1–2 0–3 1–0 3–2 1–0 1–1 4–3 2–1
Ventforet Kofu 1–1 0–4 0–1 0–0 1–0 2–1 3–3 2–0 0–0 3–0 1–0 2–0 0–1 0–0 0–0 2–0 0–1
Vissel Kobe 1–0 0–0 2–1 2–2 1–2 1–2 1–5 1–3 3–1 1–1 0–1 0–0 3–1 2–1 2–1 1–0 3–0
Tokushima Vortis 1–2 0–5 0–2 0–2 0–3 0–4 0–0 0–2 0–2 0–2 0–1 0–1 0–4 0–0 0–1 2–2 2–2
Updated to match(es) played on 8 December 2014. Source: J. League Data
Colours: Blue = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.

Top scorersEdit

AwardsEdit

IndividualEdit

Award Recipient Club Notes
Most Valuable Player   Yasuhito Endō Gamba Osaka
Rookie of the Year   Caio Kashima Antlers
Manager of the Year   Kenta Hasegawa Gamba Osaka
Top scorer   Yoshito Ōkubo Kawasaki Frontale 18 goals.

Best ElevenEdit

Position Footballer Club Nationality
GK Shusaku Nishikawa (3) Urawa Red Diamonds   Japan
DF Kosuke Ota (1) FC Tokyo   Japan
DF Masato Morishige (2) FC Tokyo   Japan
DF Tsukasa Shiotani (1) Sanfrecce Hiroshima   Japan
MF Gaku Shibasaki (1) Kashima Antlers   Japan
MF Yoshinori Muto (1) FC Tokyo   Japan
MF Léo Silva (1) Albirex Niigata   Brazil
MF Yasuhito Endō (11) Gamba Osaka   Japan
FW Yoshito Ōkubo (2) Kawasaki Frontale   Japan
FW Takashi Usami (1) Gamba Osaka   Japan
FW Patric (1) Gamba Osaka   Brazil

* The number in brackets denotes the number of times that the footballer has appeared in the Best 11.

AttendancesEdit

Pos Team Total High Low Average Change
1 Urawa Red Diamonds 603,770 56,758 0 35,516 −4.3%
2 FC Tokyo 428,184 42,059 13,048 25,187 +0.5%
3 Yokohama F. Marinos 392,496 40,571 11,088 23,088 −16.0%
4 Albirex Niigata 390,648 35,533 2,104 22,979 −12.0%
5 Cerezo Osaka 367,651 42,723 10,262 21,627 +14.9%
6 Kashima Antlers 300,310 32,099 8,840 17,665 +7.6%
7 Nagoya Grampus 284,474 38,966 5,599 16,733 +3.7%
8 Kawasaki Frontale 283,241 19,668 10,609 16,661 +0.1%
9 Vegalta Sendai 257,949 18,914 11,144 15,173 +2.1%
10 Vissel Kobe 255,185 25,382 9,375 15,010 +30.3%
11 Sanfrecce Hiroshima 254,951 24,734 9,515 14,997 −7.5%
12 Gamba Osaka 250,738 19,569 10,898 14,749 +20.0%
13 Shimizu S-Pulse 241,577 19,824 8,539 14,210 +0.5%
14 Sagan Tosu 240,323 23,277 8,276 14,137 +22.8%
15 Ventforet Kofu 206,904 36,505 5,416 12,170 −3.5%
16 Omiya Ardija 183,791 14,182 7,001 10,811 −2.9%
17 Kashiwa Reysol 182,161 14,623 6,115 10,715 −14.6%
18 Tokushima Vortis 151,034 17,274 3,594 8,884 +104.3%
League total 5,275,387 56,758 0 17,240 +0.1%

Updated to games played on 8 December 2014
Source: J. League Data
Notes:
Team played previous season in J2.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "J.League season to begin on March 1". Japan Times. 2013-12-17.
  2. ^ "J-League switches to two-stage season in order to boost fans and revenue". Inside World Football.com. 2013-09-20. Retrieved 2013-12-17.
  3. ^ "Player registration and contracts". J.League. Archived from the original on 2014-09-11. Retrieved 28 November 2014.