The Top Team
Omiya Ardija’s top team shut out Kamatamare Sanuki 2-0 in Match 34 of the Meiji Yasuda J2 League. Losing the following match 1-3 to Avispa Fukuoka, Omiya bounced back in Match 36 with a 2-1 victory over Mito Hollyhock, both goals by MF Mateus. Match 37 against Tochigi SC took place at home in front of a crowd of 12,053, and FW Genki Omae delivered the single goal of the match to give Omiya a 1-0 shut-out and their third consecutive home stadium victory. Omiya stands in fifth place with 19 wins, 12 losses and 6 ties.
FW Shoi Yoshinaga of the youth team will be joining the top team next season. Yoshinaga has been with Omiya’s Academy since he was a fifth grader. “I will always be grateful to everyone who helped me throughout the years, and I promise to put in my best efforts day in and day out,” commented Yoshinaga.
Omiya Ardija’s youth team is participating in the Prince Takamado Trophy JFA U-18 Football Prince League 2018 Kanto. They drew 2-2 with Tokyo Verdy Youth in Match 13, defeated Yamanashi Gakuin High School 3-0 in Match 14, and lost to Kawasaki Frontale U-18 with a 2-3 score, keeping their position at third place, which gives them a ticket to the premier play-offs.
Meanwhile, the junior youth is playing in the 2018 Kanto Youth (U-15) Soccer League. They beat Kashima Antlers Jr. Youth 1-0 in Match 20, but they were defeated by FC Tokyo U-15 Fukagawa 0-2 in Match 21. On September 19 they played Kashima Antlers Tsukuba in the postponed Match 17, drawing 2-2. In Match 22 they were shut out by FC Tokyo U-15 Musashi 0-1. As a result, they finished at ninth place with 8 wins, 12 losses and 2 draws.
Before the gate opened for the October 6 match against Mito, a “Game Festival” was organized for kids in kindergarten, first grade and second grade who are attending the Omiya Ardija Soccer School. About 90 children took part in the heated football matches. The soccer school is accepting applicants all year round, and those interested can sign up for a free trial.
On September 24 former players for Omiya and Urawa played an OB (Old Boys) match at NACK5 Stadium Omiya to commemorate Ardija’s 20th anniversary. Omiya Ardija just formed an OB club this past March. Thirty-eight former Ardija players came together for the commemorative match. Playing a 4-4-2 formation traditionally adopted by Ardija, they took the lead in the 14th minute with a goal by Shinji Otsuka. Urawa evened the score, but Omiya’s Takaya Kawanabe shot the deciding goal just before the whistle, delivering a 2-1 Ardija victory.
On September 28 the club cleaned up the area around JR Nishi-Omiya Station close to where Ardija’s clubhouse is located. A total of 150 staff members took part and cleaned up the streets from Nishi-Omiya Station to the Orange Cube clubhouse.
A “2018 Nishi Ward Kids Football Coaching Class” was held at Ardija’s training ground on September 29. Some 79 kids applied and participated, and they enjoyed playing football despite the rainy weather. All participants received a gift to take back home, including an original knapsack.