2020 Japanese J1 League – Yokohama F. Marinos vs Gamba Osaka Preview & Prediction

THE FACTS

When is Yokohama F. Marinos vs Gamba Osaka taking place? Sunday 23rd February, 2020 – 05:00 (UK)

Where is Yokohama F. Marinos vs Gamba Osaka taking place? Nissan Stadium

What television channel is Yokohama F. Marinos vs Gamba Osaka on? FreeSports will televise some J1 League matches this season so it is worth checking their schedule

Where can I stream Yokohama F. Marinos vs Gamba Osaka? If the match is televised on FreeSports, Premier Sport subscribers will be able to stream the match live via Premier Player. Alternatively, Bet365 customers can stream the match live on their website

Where can I get tickets for Yokohama F. Marinos vs Gamba Osaka? Ticket information can be found on each club’s official website

THE TEAM NEWS

YOKOHAMA F. MARINOS

  • Defending champions Yokohama F. Marinos come into this new J1 League campaign desperate to show that they can defend their crown and replicate their success from 2003 when they went on to win back-to-back titles with 2004 being the last time they won the trophy prior to last season.
  • Their title win also saw them qualify for the AFC Champions League for the first time since 2014 and they have already shown their credentials in that tournament having beaten South Korean side Jeonbuk Motors 2-1 away from home and hammered Aussie giants Sydney FC 4-0 on Wednesday.
  • The club have strengthened their Brazilian contingent by signing Palmeiras defender Thiago Martins as they seek to improve at the back and he has already impressed in the clean sheet kept against Sydney in midweek and should improve them notably.

GAMBA OSAKA

  • Gamba Osaka remain one of the most successful sides in J-League history but they are going through something of a lean spell right now having finished outside the top six for a third consecutive season and the pressure is on for them to challenge for the title and Champions League places in 2020.
  • They were disappointing in their season opener in the cup last weekend as the were beaten 0-1 at home by Kashiwa Reysol and their task does not get any easier as they travel to face the champions here.
  • Their big transfer in the off-season saw Japanese international Gen Shoji return to the J-League following a spell in France with Toulouse and he should improve what was a leaky defence last season.

THE PREDICTION

Yokohama F. Marinos are relishing their return to the AFC Champions League having won their opening two matches already but their attentions must now switch to the J1 League and this opening game. They face a Gamba Osaka side who can beat anybody on their day but were poor in their cup loss last weekend. They will have to improve their performance levels notably if they are to get anything against the champions, but the home side will offer them chances at the very least. Yokohama will be sharp given the fact they have played a handful of competitive games already and that may work in their favour, but expect goals at both ends in what should be an entertaining affair where the home side have to be favoured.

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