The new domestic season in Japan opens this weekend with a host of players competing for selection in Alberto Zaccheroni’s Brazil 2014 squad, while the nation's professional ranks continue to grow at an impressive pace.
Sanfrecce Hiroshima returned to the top of the J.League with a 1-1 draw against bottom side Oita Trinita, while Urawa Red Diamonds moved a point behind the top two with a 2-0 win over Shimizu S-Pulse.
J.League leaders Omiya Ardija lost 2-1 to Yokohama Marinos but remained top thanks to closest challengers Urawa Red Diamonds crashing to a 4-0 defeat to Kawasaki Frontale.
Urawa Red Diamonds defeated Ventforet Kofu 1-0 to close the gap to three points as J.League leaders Omiya Ardija were held to a 1-1 draw by Sagan Tosu on Saturday.
Omiya Ardija's 21-game non-losing streak came to an end Saturday when Vegalta Sendai defeated the league leaders 2-1, while Yokohama edged Nagoya Grampus by the same scoreline and Shonan Bellmare beat FC Tokyo 3-2 in other J.League action.
An action-packed day in the J.League saw Sanfrecce Hiroshima move into top spot after taking advantage of a surprise defeat for Vegalta Sendai.