J.League (Japan Professional Soccer League)

About the J.League

In 1993, Japan's first professional soccer league, the "J League," officially started. The J-League started with 10 teams: Kashima Antlers, Jeff United Ichihara, Urawa Reds, Verdy Kawasaki, Yokohama Marinos, Yokohama Flugels, Shimizu S-Pulse, Nagoya Grampus, Gamba Osaka, and Sanfrecce Hiroshima.

In 1999, the league expanded the number of teams and launched the J-League Division 2 (J2) and the top league J-League Division 1 (J1) to form a two-division system. In 2014, with the addition of J League Division 3, it became a three-division system.

In a normal season, the bottom 3 teams of J1 will be automatically demoted to J2, and the top 2 teams of J2 will be automatically promoted to J1. The playoffs will determine the remaining 1 slot that can be promoted to J1 by the 3rd to 6th place teams in J2. *In the 2020 season, there was no team replacement due to the influence of COVID-19.

2020 Season: J League Participating Clubs / Home Stadium

J1
Teams Prefecture Stadium
Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo Hokkaido Sapporo Dome
Vegalta Sendai Miyagi Yurtec Stadium Sendai
Kashima Antlers Ibaraki Kashima Soccer Stadium
Urawa Reds Saitama Saitama Stadium 2002
Kashiwa Reysol Chiba SANKYO FRONTIER Kashiwa Stadium
F.C. Tokyo Tokyo Ajinomoto Stadium
Kawasaki Frontale Kanagawa Kawasaki Todoroki Stadium
Yokohama F. Marinos Kanagawa Nissan Stadium
Yokohama F.C. Kanagawa NHK Spring Mitsuzawa Football Stadium
Shonan Bellmare Kanagawa LEMON GAS Stadium Hiratsuka
Shimizu S-Pulse Shizuoka IAI Stadium Nihondaira
Nagoya Grampus Aichi Toyota Stadium
Gamba Osaka Osaka Panasonic Stadium Suita
Cerezo Osaka Osaka Yanmar Stadium Nagai
Vissel Kobe Hyogo Noevir Stadium Kobe
Sanfrecce Hiroshima Hiroshima Edion Stadium Hiroshima
Tokushima Vortis Tokushima Pocari Sweat Stadium
Avispa Fukuoka Fukuoka Best Denki Stadium
Sagan Tosu Saga Ekimae Fudosan (Real Estate) Stadium
Oita Trinita Oita Showa Denko Dome Oita
J2
Teams Prefecture Stadium
Blaublitz Akita Akita Soyu Stadium
Montedio Yamagata Yamagata ND Soft Stadium Yamagata
Mito Hollyhock Ibaraki K's Denki Stadium Mito
Tochigi SC Tochigi Kanseki Stadium Tochigi
Thespakusatsu Gunma Gunma Shoda Shoyu Stadium Gunma
Omiya Ardija Saitama NACK5 Stadium Omiya
JEF United Chiba Chiba Fukuda Denshi Arena
FC Machida Zelvia Tokyo Machida GION Stadium 
Tokyo Verdy Tokyo Ajinomoto Stadium
S.C. Sagamihara Kanagawa Sagamihara Gion Stadium
Albirex Niigata Niigata Denka Big Swan Stadium
Zweigen Kanazawa Ishikawa Ishikawa Athletics Stadium
Ventforet Kofu Yamanashi Yamanashi Chuo Bank Stadium
Matsumoto Yamaga F.C. Nagano Sunpro Alwin
Jubilo Iwata Shizuoka Yamaha Stadium
Kyoto Sanga F.C. Kyoto Sanga Stadium by KYOCERA
Fagiano Okayama Okayama City Light Stadium
Renofa Yamaguchi FC Yamaguchi Ishin Me-Life Stadium
Ehime FC Ehime Ningineer Stadium
Giravanz Kitakyushu Fukuoka Mikuni World Stadium Kitakyushu
V.Varen Nagasaki Nagasaki Transcosmos Stadium Nagasaki
FC Ryukyu Okinawa Tapic Kenso Hiyagon Stadium
J3
Teams Prefecture Stadium
Vanraure Hachinohe Aomori Prifoods Stadium
Iwate Grulla Morioka Iwate Iwagin Stadium
Fukushima United FC Fukushima Toho Stadium
Y.S.C.C. Yokohama Kanagawa NHK Spring Mitsuzawa Football Stadium
Kataller Toyama Toyama Toyama Stadium
AC Nagano Parceiro Nagano Nagano U Stadium
FC Gifu Gifu Gifu Memorial Center Nagaragawa Stadium
Fujieda MYFC Shizuoka Fujieda Soccer Stadium
Azul Claro Numazu Shizuoka Ashitaka Park Stadium
Gainare Tottori Tottori Axis Bird Stadium
Kamatamare Sanuki Kagawa Pikara Stadium
FC Imabari Ehime Arigatou Services. Yume Stadium
Roasso Kumamoto Kumamoto Egao Kenko Stadium
Tegevajaro Miyazaki Miyazaki Unilever Stadium Shintomi
Kagoshima United FC Kagoshima Shiranami Stadium

Professional football in Japan

J.League (Japan)

The winning team is determined by the points throughout the season. Win = 3 points, Draw = 1 point, Loss = 0 points. There are no overtime or penalty shootouts. The J League season schedule consists of 34 games for each of the 18 teams in the J1 division.

The regular season begins in mid-February and ends in early-mid-December.

Schedule of the 2020 Season

J1 from February 21 to December 19, 2020
J2 from February 23 to December 20, 2020
J3 from June 27 to December 20, 2020

Teams that have won J. League titles in the past

Kashima Antlers 8th
Yokohama F. Marinos 4th
Jubilo Iwata3 times
Sanfrecce Hiroshima 3 times
Tokyo Verdi 2 times
Gamba Osaka 2
Kawasaki Frontale 2
Urawa Reds 1
Nagoya Grampus 1
Reysol 1

J.League Cup (Levan Cup)

The J-League Levain Cup is held during the regular season, with the top 2 teams from each group that has won the group league (Four teams in four groups) advancing to the playoff stage. The playoff stage is a two-game system at home and away, and the winner goes to the prime stage. In the prime stage, the ACL contestants join, and a total of eight teams compete for the championship. The quarter-finals and semi-finals will be a two-game system at home and away, and the final will be one game. If there is a tie, the rules for overtime and penalty shootout will apply.

2019 J League Levain Cup schedule

Group Stages
Section 1:  March 6, 2019
Section 2:  March 13, 2019
Section 3:  April 10, 2019
Section 4:  April 24, 2019
Section 5:  May 8, 2019
Section 6:  May 22

2019 J League Levain Cup Playoff Stages
June 19, 2019 & June 26, 2019

2019 J League Levain Cup Prime Stages
Quarterfinals: September 4, 2019 & September 8, 2019
Semi-finals: October 9, 2019 & October 13, 2019
Final: October 26, 2019

Emperor's Cup JFA All Japan Football Championship

The All Japan Soccer Championship, known as the Emperor's Cup. The Emperor's Cup is an exciting tournament in which amateur teams from each prefecture participate along with professional teams from the J League (J1 & J2). It is a tradition that the final is held on New Year's Day.
 
2019 Emperor's Cup Schedule

1st Round: May 25-26, 2019
2nd Round: July 3-10, 2019
3rd Round: August 14, 2019
4th Round: September 18, 2019
Quarterfinals October 23, 2019
Semi-finals: December 21, 2019
Final: January 1, 2020

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