JEF United Chiba

JEF United Chiba (ジェフユナイテッド千葉, Jefu Yunaiteddo Chiba), full name JEF United Ichihara Chiba (ジェフユナイテッド市原・千葉, Jefu Yunaiteddo Ichihara Chiba) and also known as JEF Chiba (ジェフ千葉, Jefu Chiba), is a Japanese professional football club that plays in the J2 League. On 1 February 2005, the club changed its name from JEF United Ichihara to the current name after Chiba city had joined Ichihara, Chiba as its hometown in 2003. Of its club name, JEF is taken from the JR East and Furukawa Electric companies and United is meant to represent the unity of the club and its home city. Also, JEF United is the only team in J.League which corporate name survived the transition from the JSL in 1992, as J.League mandated that "corporate teams are not allowed in the J.League", and that any corporate teams need to adapt a hometown.

JEF United Chiba
ジェフユナイテッド千葉
JEF United Chiba logo.svg
Full nameJEF United Ichihara Chiba
Nickname(s)JEF, Inu (The Dogs)
Founded1946; 76 years ago (1946)
as Furukawa Electric SC
GroundFukuda Denshi Arena
Chiba
Capacity19,781
OwnerEast Japan Railway Company (50%)
Furukawa Electric (50%)
ChairmanKou Morimoto
ManagerYoshiyuki Kobayashi (from 2023)
LeagueJ2 League
2022J2 League, 10th of 22
WebsiteClub website

HistoryEdit

Furukawa Electric SC (1946–1991)Edit

The club began as the company team, Furukawa Electric Soccer Club (古河電気工業サッカー部) in 1946. As the company team, it won the Japan Soccer League twice, the Emperor's Cup four times and the JSL League Cup three times. Furukawa also won the 1986–87 Asian Club Championship, the top club honor in Asia; they were the first Japanese club to do so.

The club was a founding member ("Original Eight"[a]) of the Japan Soccer League (JSL) in 1965. Since the league's inception, the club had always played in the top flight in Japan and was the only Japanese club to never be relegated from the JSL Division 1, a record they kept into the J1 years. They did finish the 1978 season in a relegation position (last of 10) but stayed up after beating Honda FC 1–0 on aggregate in a two-legged playoff. The last place was not automatically relegated until the 1980 season.

JEF United Ichihara (1992–2004)Edit

In 1991, it merged with the JR East's company team to become East Japan JR Furukawa Football Club (東日本ジェイアール古河サッカークラブ) and rebranded itself as JEF United Ichihara upon the J.League's founding in 1993. JEF United Ichihara was an original member ("Original Ten"[b]) of the J.League in 1993. The club initially built itself around the former Germany national football team player Pierre Littbarski.

From 1998 to 2000, the club struggled to stay in the J.League and it began a series of efforts to be a competitive team. Since the hiring of Ivica Osim in 2003, JEF United has contended for the league title each year despite limited resources and struggling attendance.

JEF United Chiba (2005–)Edit

On July 16, 2006, Osim left the club to take over the coach of the Japan national team and was succeeded by Amar Osim, his son and assistant coach.[1]. On December 5, 2007, it was announced that Amar Osim had been sacked after the club's lowly 13th-place finish in the 2007 season.[2]

After 13 games in the 2008 season Josip Kuže was sacked as team manager. On 8 May 2008 it was announced that the new manager was Alex Miller. Miller was First Team Coach at Liverpool F.C. alongside Rafael Benítez prior to joining JEF United.

The Furukawa Electric is no longer the main sponsor of the club, a job these days taken over by Fuji Electric.

On November 8, 2009, JEF United Chiba was relegated to J2 after 44 seasons in the Japanese top division; since 2010, JEF United Chiba is playing in J.League Division 2.

JEF United Chiba was close to being promoted to J.League Division 1 during the 2012 season. The club was considered one of the favorites to be directly promoted to J1. However, after defeats to clubs considered lesser than them such as FC Gifu and F.C. Machida Zelvia, JEF played the playoffs, making their road to the final. They defeated Yokohama FC by 4–0, but lost the final match to Oita Trinita by 1–0, at Tokyo National Stadium.

In the 2013 season they played in the promotion to J1 playoffs. They lost the semi final match to Tokushima Vortis by 1–1(Chiba was 6th place and Tokushima was 3rd place in the league, regulation decides up high club can go final even draw.)

In the 2014 season they played in the promotion playoffs to J1 again. The club did not have to play in the semi-final(Chiba was 4th place but the 3rd place club named Giravanz Kitakyushu had a J League original stadium problem so Kitakyushu could not go to the promotion play off). In the final against Montedio Yamagata, they lost by 0–1, at Ajinomoto Stadium.

SymbolsEdit

StadiumsEdit

It had played its home matches at Ichihara Seaside Stadium, but has since moved to the larger, football-specific and more conveniently located Fukuda Denshi Arena, which opened in Chiba during the 2005 season. The club had initially practiced at Urayasu, Chiba planning to base itself in Narashino, Chiba before opposition by those living around Akitsu Stadium forced it to be based in Ichihara. Since 2000, training has been held at Footpark Anesaki in Ichihara in normally. Since 1 October 2009, they made new practice place UNITED PARK near the Fukuda Denshi Arena.

MascotEdit

 
Akitas and Mina

JEF United Ichihara's mascot characters are Akita Inu brothers named Jeffy and Unity. The squad number of Jeffy is 2 and that of Unity is 9. They are also joined by a third mascot named Mina, or Mina-chan. Her backstory was that she one day came to Soga Station (the railway station nearest to Fukuda Denshi Arena) and offered to work alongside Jeffy and Unity.[1] Her squad number is 12.

SloganEdit

JEF United considers its philosophy to be encapsulated in its tagline "Win By All" [2] since 2001.

Affiliated clubsEdit

Furukawa Electric ChibaEdit

This was JEF's reserve team during the JSL years. They were formed in 1967 and were first promoted to the JSL Second Division in 1975. They still exist, although they are no longer affiliated on paper, and play in the Kanto Regional League. In 2008 they renamed themselves S.A.I. Ichihara and in 2011 they adopted the name Vonds Ichihara. Now separate from Furukawa Electric control, they aim to form its power base in Ichihara as JEF is now based in Chiba city.

JEF ReservesEdit

JEF's reserve team played until 2011 in the Japan Football League, the third tier of Japanese football. But in 2011, the club announced the end of the B team because of financial problems.

JEF United Chiba LadiesEdit

RivalriesEdit

Marunouchi GosankeEdit

Historically, JEF United's fiercest rivals have been Kashiwa Reysol and Urawa Reds, both close neighbors. The three were co-founders ("Original Eight") of the Japan Soccer League (JSL) in 1965, and spent most seasons in the top tier through the JSL era. Because of their former parent companies' headquarters being all based in Marunouchi, Tokyo, the three clubs were known as the Marunouchi Gosanke (丸の内御三家) and fixtures among them were known as the Marunouchi derbies.

Chiba derbyEdit

JEF United and Reysol first met in 1941 in ancient Kanto regional football league. The two clubs both now based in Chiba Prefecture, and their rivalry is known as the Chiba derby. They annually contest a pre-season friendly match well known as the Chibagin Cup (i.e., Chiba Bank Cup) since 1995.


Record as J.League memberEdit

Champions Runners-up Third place Promoted Relegated
Season Division Teams Position P W (PKW / OTW) D L (PKL / OTL) F A GD Pts Attendance/G J.League
Cup
Emperor's
Cup
JEF United Ichihara
1992 Group stage Quarter final
1993 J1 10 8th 36 14 - 22 51 67 -16 - 20,273 Group stage Quarter final
1994 12 9th 44 19 - 25 69 85 -16 - 22,262 2nd round 2nd round
1995 14 5th 52 28 (0 / -) - 20 (4 / -) 97 91 6 88 15,418 1st round
1996 16 9th 30 13 (0 / -) - 16 (1 / -) 45 47 -2 40 12,008 Group stage 3rd round
1997 17 13th 32 6 (0 / 5) - 17 (1 / 3) 43 66 -23 28 5,693 Quarter-final 4th round
1998 18 16th 34 8 (1 / 0) - 20 (1 / 4) 49 75 -26 25 5,365 Final 3rd round
1999 16 13th 30 6 (0 / 4) 2 14 (0 / 4) 41 56 -15 28 5,774 2nd round 3rd round
2000 16 14th 30 8 (0 / 1) 2 14 (0 / 5) 37 49 -12 28 6,338 2nd round Quarter final
2001 16 3rd 30 14 (0 / 3) 2 9 (0 / 2) 60 54 6 50 7,818 Quarter-final Quarter final
2002 16 7th 30 12 (- / 1) 3 14 38 42 -4 41 7,897 Quarter-final Semi-final
2003 16 3rd 30 15 8 7 57 38 19 53 9,709 Group stage Quarter final
2004 16 4th 30 13 11 6 55 45 10 50 10,012 Group stage 4th round
JEF United Chiba
2005 J1 18 4th 34 16 11 7 56 42 59 35 Winner 5th round
2006 18 11th 34 13 5 16 57 58 -1 44 13,393 Winner 4th round
2007 18 13th 34 12 6 16 51 56 -5 42 14,149 Group stage 4th round
2008 18 15th 34 10 8 16 36 53 17 38 14,084 Quarter final 4th round
2009 18 18th 34 5 12 17 32 56 -24 27 14,730 Group stage 4th round
2010 J2 19 4th 36 18 7 11 58 37 21 61 11,689 Not eligible 4th round
2011 20 6th 38 16 10 12 46 39 7 58 9,680 Quarter final
2012 22 5th 42 21 9 12 61 33 28 72 9,281 Quarter final
2013 22 5th 42 18 12 12 68 49 19 66 10,004 3rd round
2014 22 3rd 42 18 14 10 55 44 11 68 9,333 Semi-final
2015 22 9th 42 15 12 15 50 45 5 57 10,725 3rd round
2016 22 11th 42 13 14 15 52 53 -1 53 10,292 3rd round
2017 22 6th 42 20 8 14 70 58 12 68 9,983 3rd round
2018 22 14th 42 16 7 19 72 72 0 55 9,858 3rd round
2019 22 17th 42 10 13 19 46 64 -18 43 9,701 2nd round
2020 22 14th 42 15 8 19 47 51 -4 53 2,778 Did not qualify
2021 22 8th 42 17 15 10 48 36 12 66 4,068 3rd round
2022 22 10th 42 17 10 15 44 42 2 61 5,775 2nd round
2023 22 TBA 42
Key
  • Pos. = Position in league; P = Games played; W = Games won; D = Games drawn; L = Games lost; F = Goals scored; A = Goals conceded; GD = Goals difference; Pts = Points gained
  • OTW / PKW = Overtime wins / Penalty kicks wins 1997 & 1998 seasons - 1999, 2000, 2001 & 2002 Overtime wins only
  • OTL / PKL = Overtime losses / Penalty kicks losses 1997 and 1998 seasons - 1999, 2000 & 2001 Overtime losses only
  • Attendance/G = Average home league attendance
  • 2020 & 2021 seasons attendances reduced by COVID-19 worldwide pandemic
  • Source: J.League Data Site

HonoursEdit

As Furukawa Electric SC (1946–1992), JEF United Ichihara (1992–2004), and JEF United Chiba (2005–present)

NationalEdit

LeagueEdit

CupsEdit

InternationalEdit

League historyEdit

  • Division 1 (JSL Div. 1): 1965–1992
  • Division 1 (J1): 1993–2009
  • Division 2 (J2): 2010–present

PlayersEdit

Current squadEdit

As of 19 August 2022.[3]Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK   JPN Shota Arai (vice-captain)
4 MF   JPN Taishi Taguchi (vice-captain)
5 MF   JPN Yusuke Kobayashi
6 DF   JPN Ikki Arai
8 MF   JPN Koya Kazama
9 FW   JPN Kengo Kawamata
10 MF   JPN Tomoya Miki
11 DF   JPN Koki Yonekura
13 DF   JPN Daisuke Suzuki (captain)
14 MF   JPN Shuto Kojima
15 DF   KOR Jang Min-gyu
17 MF   JPN Takaki Fukumitsu
18 MF   JPN Andrew Kumagai
20 FW   JPN Toshiyuki Takagi
21 MF   JPN Yosuke Akiyama (on loan from Vegalta Sendai)
22 DF   JPN Shogo Sasaki
23 GK   JPN Ryota Suzuki
25 MF   JPN Rui Sueyoshi
No. Pos. Nation Player
26 DF   JPN Shunsuke Nishikubo
27 FW   BRA Tiago Leonço
28 MF   JPN Tomoya Shinohara
29 FW   JPN Taichi Sakuma
30 DF   JPN Shuto Tanabe (on loan from Kawasaki Frontale)
31 GK   JPN Sota Matsubara
32 MF   JPN Issei Takahashi
33 DF   BRA Daniel Alves (on loan from Palmeiras)
34 GK   JPN Ryuto Miyake Type 2
35 FW   BRA Ricardo Lopes
37 FW   JPN Keita Buwanika
40 FW   JPN Solomon Sakuragawa
41 FW   JPN Hiiro Komori DSP
45 DF   JPN Shuntaro Yaguchi Type 2
47 MF   JPN Ryuta Shimmyo Type 2
48 DF   JPN Soshiro Tanida Type 2
50 MF   JPN Kota Kuwabara Type 2

Out on loanEdit

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
19 FW   BRA Saldanha (at Chengdu Rongcheng until 31 December 2022)
FW   JPN Raito Saito (at ReinMeer Aomori until 31 January 2023)

International capped playersEdit

JFA
AFC/ CAF/ OFC
UEFA
CONMEBOL

Coaching staffEdit

Position Name
Manager   Yoshiyuki Kobayashi
Assistant Manager   Masataka Sakamoto
First Team coach   Masashi Owada
Goalkeeper coach   Motoki Kawahara
Physical coach   Ryota Mizuguchi
Technical staff   Daisuke Matsumoto
Doctor   Keiji Kobayashi
  Yohei Kobayashi
  Hiroki Nakajima
  Masashi Nagao
  Yasumasa Momoi
  Takanori Wakayama
Chief trainer   Tomoaki Nakao
Athletic trainer   Yuya Okamoto
  Toshifumi Goto
  Naoki Akiyoshi
Interpreter   Chin Hee-Kyun
  Fabricio
Competent   Yuma Fukushima
Side affairs   Kosuke Tomitani
Kit   Toshiya Goto
General Manager[4]   Takehito Suzuki

Managerial historyEdit

Manager Nationality Tenure
Yoshikazu Nagai   Japan 1992–1993
Eijun Kiyokumo   Japan 1994–1995
Yasuhiko Okudera   Japan 1996
Jan Versleijen   Netherlands 1997–1998
Gert Engels   Germany 1999
Nicolae Zamfir   Romania 1999–2000
Sugao Kambe (interim)   Japan 2000
Zdenko Verdenik   Slovenia 2000–2001
Sugao Kambe (interim)   Japan 2001
Jozef Vengloš   Slovakia 2002
Ivica Osim   Bosnia and Herzegovina 2003–2006
Amar Osim   Bosnia and Herzegovina 2006–2007
Josip Kuže   Croatia 2008
Shigeo Sawairi (interim)   Japan 2008
Alex Miller   Scotland 2008–2009
Atsuhiko Ejiri   Japan 2009–2010
Dwight Lodeweges   Netherlands 2011
Sugao Kambe   Japan 2011
Takashi Kiyama   Japan 2012
Jun Suzuki   Japan 2013–2014
Kazuo Saito (interim)   Japan 2014
Takashi Sekizuka   Japan 2014–2016
Shigetoshi Hasebe (interim)   Japan 2016
Juan Esnáider   Argentina 2017–2019
Atsuhiko Ejiri   Japan 2019
Yoon Jong-hwan   South Korea 2020–2022
Yoshiyuki Kobayashi   Japan 2023–

Kit and coloursEdit

The club colours of JEF United Chiba are yellow, green and red.

Kit evolutionEdit

NotesEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ A brief history of J.League mascots | Mascot madness in Japanese football, retrieved 2022-04-08
  2. ^ "JEF UNITED ICHIHARA CHIBA". JEF UNITED ICHIHARA CHIBA. Retrieved 2020-08-17.
  3. ^ "選手・スタッフ | 2022 | トップチーム | ジェフユナイテッド千葉 公式ウェブサイト". jefunited.co.jp. Retrieved 5 August 2022.
  4. ^ "Job Title". jefunited.co.jp. Retrieved 29 October 2022.

External Links.Edit

Achievements
Preceded by Champions of Asia
1986–87
Succeeded by