The Top Team
Omiya Ardija’s performance has been bumpy in the second stage, and the team has failed to secure two wins in a row. But finally, after beating Sanfrecce Hiroshima 1-0 in Match 11, Omiya clutched a back-to-back win by crushing Kawasaki Frontale in Match 12. Both opponents had beat Omiya in the first stage so it was great to even the score, and even better to mark a club record of 46 points in a single J1 season. Omiya has also secured a place in J1 for the next season.
Looking to make the first semifinal appearance in the J.League YBC Levain Cup, Omiya defeated Yokohama F･Marinos 2-1 at home, but lost 0-1 in the second leg and was knocked out on away goal difference.
Omiya Ardija’s junior team took part in the U-12 Junior Soccer World Challenge 2016, and advanced to the knock-out stage with an unblemished three-win performance in the group league. Beating Nagoya Grampus U-12 and Kawasaki Frontale U-12, they made it to the final where they played Spain’s FC Barcelona. Omiya’s junior team lost 0-1 in the final but was crowned runner-up of the tournament.
Twenty members from Omiya Ardija’s junior youth team (U-13) participated in a career design support program called “J.League Yononaka Class.” The program gave them an opportunity to reflect on their relationship with football as a prospective professional player, and they also brushed up on their communication skills and other key qualities that are important in a professional career.
The Omiya Ardija Soccer School held a summer camp in Tsumagoi on August 23 and in Nasu on August 30. Fifty-nine fourth and fifth grade children took part in the Tsumagoi camp, while 83 second and third graders enjoyed the Nasu camp. Not only did they work on improving their football skills, but they trained with children from other schools and gained a valuable experience.
In accordance with the three Fair Play Declarations promoted by the J.League and as one of the concrete measures to help spread “social fair play,” Omiya Ardija is working with various organizations to carry out various educational activities focusing on human rights. A message expressing our hopes and expectations toward children, who hold the future of our society, was delivered to the Minister of Justice, Katsutoshi Kaneda, on August 31. On September 7 Governor Kiyoshi Ueda of Saitama Prefecture signed a petition accompanied by a message, “Fair play in sports and on the internet.” And during the September 17 match against Kawasaki Frontale, a message “Stop! Don’t violate human rights on the internet. Your posts will be viewed from people all over the world,” was put up in the main stand concourse to support the campaign against slander in cyber space.
Between September 4 and 11, the club’s ambassador, Taishi Tsukamoto, covered a distance of approximately 1,200 kilometers on a bicycle from Omiya City to Saga Prefecture. Tsukamoto commented, “I want to continue giving courage to people who suffer from the same illness.”