The Top Team
The July 15 defeat to Tochigi SC ended Omiya Ardija’s winning streak that started from the opening of the season. After that loss, the team struggled to gain winning points. Though short one match, the team dropped to seventh place in the league rankings after August 19. The match against Avispa Fukuoka that was supposed to take place on August 2 was suddenly postponed an hour and fifteen minutes before the scheduled kickoff time because there was a high risk that one of the Fukuoka players was infected by the coronavirus.
The U-19 Japan national team training camp in Chiba was also cancelled just before it was due to start because one of the U-19 players tested positive. It was a huge disappointment for Soya Takada, who was invited to participate.
All categories of the Omiya Ardija Academy resumed training, but this year’s national competitions have been cancelled and alternative tournaments are being planned.
Omiya’s U18 players Haruki Ozawa and Raisei Abe were selected to take part in the training camp for the U-16 Japan national team candidate members held from August 19 to 23 at the Prince Takamado Memorial JFA YUME Field in Chiba Prefecture.
Ardija’s soccer schools continue to carry out their activities while taking careful measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The schools started offering free trials and accepting new students again since June 26.
A five-day “Skill-up Challenge” event was held from August 3 to 7 at Orange Court Stellartown for Ardija’s soccer school students in first and second grade.
With the cooperation of NTT East, the presenting partner of Match 11 of the Meiji Yasuda J2 league against Jubilo Iwata held on August 12, a special “WIN WIN” T-shirt was given away to 2,000 winners of a draw. This time’s T-shirt design used the outlines of Saitama City and Saitama Prefecture spread out in a camouflage pattern, with Ardija’s mascots Ardy and Miya hidden in the design. The T-shirt was also distributed to local shops. People wearing the T-shirt were captured on the Daidai Square on-line footage during the match, showing the local community’s solidarity during the home game.
Thanks to the cooperation from club partner, Hareno Terrace Shopping Center, a home game catering car called “Daidai Yatai” was dispatched to four away games in August (Aug. 8 Albirex Niigata; Aug. 16 Renofa Yamaguchi; Aug. 22 Ehime FC; Aug. 29 V Farlane Nagasaki) to cater to the spectators at the stadium. Because of the strict anti-coronavirus measures undertaken at J.League matches, supporters of the visiting team are still not allowed to attend and sales of alcohol is also prohibited, leaving concession stands at the stadium seriously affected by the loss in sales. In order to provide support to these businesses, food and beverages served at the stadium were sold at Hareno Terrace, our club partner, during away games.