Cerezo Osaka held a press conference today after the first training session of the year and announced the list of squad numbers and staff.

GK
1. Kentaro Kakoi (joined from FC Tokyo)
21. Kim Jin-Hyeon
27. Kenta Tanno
32. Ahn Joon-Soo
45. Shu Mogi (joined from Toko Gakuen High School)

DF
2. Riku Matsuda (changed from the number 15)
3. Teruyuki Moniwa
4. Kota Fujimoto
5. Yusuke Tanaka
14. Yusuke Maruhashi
22. Matej Jonjic (joined from Incheon United)
23. Tatsuya Yamashita
28. Hayato Nukui
29. Kakeru Funaki (joined from Cerezo Osaka U-18)
33. Kenta Mukuhara
37. Reiya Morishita (joined from Cerezo Osaka U-18)
39. Honoya Shoji

MF
6. Souza
7. Kunimitsu Sekiguchi
8. Yoichiro Kakitani
10. Hotaru Yamaguchi (changed from the number 41)
13. Mitsuru Maruoka
15. Yasuki Kimoto (changed from the number 30)
16. Kota Mizunuma (joined from FC Tokyo on loan)
17. Takaki Fukumitsu (joined from Renofa Yamaguchi)
18. Shohei Kiyohara
20. Noriyuki Sakemoto (changed from the number 17)
24. Kazuya Yamamura
25. Hirofumi Yamauchi (joined from Waseda University)
26. Daichi Akiyama
30. Musashi Oyama (joined from Sapporo Otani High School)
34. Masaki Sakamoto
35. Masaki Okino
36. Toshiki Onozawa (joined from Cerezo Osaka U-18)
38. Masataka Nishimoto

FW
9. Kenyu Sugimoto
11. Ricardo Santos
19. Ryuji Sawakami (changed from the number 29)
31. Towa Yamane (joined from Sanfrecce Hiroshima Youth)
40. Takeru Kishimoto

Staff
Manager: Yoon Jong-Hwan (joined from Ulsan Hyundai)
Coach: Lee Sung-Jae (joined from Ulsan Hyundai)
Coach: Akio Kogiku
GK Coach: Nobuhiro Takeda (joined from Cerezo Osaka Academy)
Physical Coach: Toru Yamazaki
Physical Coach: Hitoshi Tanaka
Assistant Coach: Yuzuru Suwabe

U-23 Staff
Manager: Yuji Okuma
Coach: Daisuke Takahashi
Physical Coach: Hideaki Fujino (joined from Cerezo Osaka Academy)
GK Coach: Daishi Ide

Club Management
Chief: Kiyoshi Okuma
Chief of Football Operation Group: Hiroaki Morishima
Staff of Football Operation Group: Hiroyuki Kamikama, Takeshi Shiiya, Yoshitaka Tomaru, Martin Williams
Chief of Administration Group: Hiroyuki Kamikama
Staff of Administration Group: Shinya Ishida, Takuya Fukazawa, Yoei Jefferson Tonaki, Akira Sakaguchi

 

What is the most surprising as to the squad numbers is that Noriyuki Sakemoto wears the number 20 shirt this season. 20 is the number worn by, most notably, Akinori Nishizawa, and regarded as one of important numbers for the club. It is uncertain why he decided to wear it instead of the number 17, which he had worn for more than 10 years, but we can say he is a right person to wear it as the longest serving player among the current squad.

There are some changes in coaches and staff which hadn’t been revealed nor predicted until today. Firstly, former manager Kiyoshi Okuma replaced Isao Miyamoto as the tiimu tokatsu bucho (the chief supervising the whole club, which may be adequately translated as the GM), and club legend Hiroaki Morishima is appointed as the chief of the Football Operation Group. Secondly, a person named Martin Williams is added to the list of the Group. I don’t know who he is so I searched it, then Google suggested a former Reading striker and Manchester United scout. But actually it seems he’s Jonjic’s translator according to a transcript of the press conference.

Thirdly, although rumors said Yoon Jong-Hwan would bring some staff to the club, actually only one coach joined: Lee Sung-Jae. According to Wikipedia, Lee is a former Bucheon SK striker who started his coaching career at Daejeon Citizen in 2013 and has worked with Yoon at Ulsan Hyundai since 2015.

 

League Fixtures

J. League announced the first 3 fixtures and Cerezo Osaka’s games will take place as follows.

MD1 – February 25
Cerezo Osaka vs Jubilo Iwata (Yanmar Stadium Nagai)

MD2 – March 4
Urawa Reds vs Cerezo Osaka (Saitama Stadium 2002)

MD3 – March 11
Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo vs Cerezo Osaka (Sapporo Dome)

Cerezo Osaka U-23 will start their second J3 season at Kincho Stadium on March 12, against Grulla Morioka.