Nagoya Grampus won their first 2 matches last season, but then went on to go on a 15-match run without a win. So they were in real danger of getting relegated, but after they brought in a couple of reinforcements in Maeda, Eduardo Neto and Nakatani they turned things around. They conceded 59 goals which was the highest in the league, but only Kawasaki, Shimizu and Marinos scored more goals than them so they had a quite interesting season.
They’ve taken measures to improve their defence ahead of this year`s campaign, and have brought in the experienced CB Chiba to lead their back-trio, and Yoshida is new in the left wing-back position. In the middle Yonemoto could be a potential star-signing, as he’s always had lots of potential but never really gotten all of it out at FC Tokyo. A new environment and a new role at Nagoya might be exactly what he needs.
Up front Jo is undoubtedly their main man this season as well, but they also brought in the speedy Mateus from Omiya. With Jo, Mateus and Gabriel in their all-Brazilian attacking trio there’s few other teams that can match the firepower they have. Behind those players its quite thin though, and if for example Jo should be injured they are left with the mediocre Akasaki as their only option in the no.9 role.
If Nagoya can continue on the form they showed in the latter half of last season this could be a much better year for them, and they got the potential to beat most teams in the league. Their defence is still their main weakness but if they can keep their key-players fit they should be able to contend for a place on the upper half of the table.
Last 6 seasons:
2018: (Predicted: 7th – 12th) 15.
2017: (Predicted: 1st – 2nd) 3. (J2)
2016: (Predicted: 9th – 12th) 16.
2015: (Predicted: 7th – 11th 9.
2014: (Predicted: 6th – 10th) 10.
2013: (Predicted: 5th – 8th) 11.
2018: 3.26 (52-59) Home: 3.35 / Away: 3.18
2017: 3.57 (85-65) Home: 3.81 / Away: 3.33 (J2)
2016: 2.82 (38-58) Home: 2.94 / Away: 2.70
2015: 2.70 (44-48) Home: 2.70 / Away: 2.70
2014: 2.79 (47-48) Home: 3.06 / Away: 2.53
2013: 2.79 (47-48) Home: 2.69 / Away: 2.94
DF Chiba (R)
DF Yoshida (R)
MF Yonemoto (R)
AM Mateus (R)
AM Sugimori (S/R)
FW Akasaki (S/R)
DF Rocha (S/R)
DF Arai (S/R)
MF Hattanda (S/R)
FW Tamada (R)
FW Sato (S/R)
Maruyama – Chiba – Nakatani
Maeda – Yonemoto – Eduardo Neto – Yoshida
Gabriel Xavier (K) – Mateus
Prediction: 5th – 9th place