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Kawasaki Frontale (JPN)

Kawasaki Frontale is a J. League football club. The team is located in Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo. Their home stadium is Todoroki Athletics Stadium, in Nakahara Ward, in the central area of Kawasaki.

Founded in 1955 as Fujitsu soccer club. The club was one of many city clubs that comprised the Japan Soccer League, including Yomiuri Shimbun (later Tokyo Verdy 1969), Toshiba (later Consadole Sapporo) and NKK (now defunct). They first made the JSL First Division in 1977, only to be relegated the next season afterwards and would not return to the top flight until 1999, when they were first promoted to the rebranded J1.
Old crest

Fujitsu’s club became professional in 1997, and changed its name – “Frontale” means “front” in Italian. The club old crest and colours are based on those of Brazilian side Grêmio, because both clubs have cooperated since 26 March 1997.[1]. The club joined the second division of the J. League in 1999, and became the champion of the division. But in the next season, it sank to the bottom of division one, and was relegated. In 2004, they were champions of J2 and won promotion to J1 for the second time. With the former rival city clubs out of the way due to relocation or liquidation, Frontale began building its power base in the city.

In 2006 they achieved runner-up position in J1, their highest league position to date. In 2007, this club attended the AFC Champions League, and made important success, as the first Japanese club for qualifying its group stage, before Urawa Red Diamonds. But Kawasaki lost in the quarter finals, against Iranian Sepahan F.C., in a penalty shoot-out after two scoreless games.

Kawasaki has advanced steadily, and provides players for the Japan national football team. At first, defender Yoshinobu Minowa was selected in 2005. After the 2006 FIFA World Cup, midfielder Kengo Nakamura and forward Kazuki Ganaha became new internationals, especially Kengo Nakamura found his position, and played both in his club and national team till now. Then goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima debuted in East Asian Cup 2008, but he allowed one goal for his fellow in J.Jeague, Chong Tese, played in the Korea DPR national football team. In May, Shuhei Terada was also selected for the Japan national team.

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