19 August 2020
Sanfrecce Hiroshima and FC Tokyo go head-to-head at the Edion Stadium Hiroshima in a potentially low-scoring J1 League affair. All three of their previous top-flight H2Hs have featured under 2.5 goals, with the last two seeing no more than one.
It’s been ‘all or nothing’ for Hiroshima in their last five J1 League outings (W3, L2), with four of those results (wins/losses) seeing the winner on the day keep a blank sheet and three featuring the identical 1-0 scoreline. The ‘clean-sheet’ theme will be of the utmost importance for the hosts here, given that all four of their league triumphs this season have seen them shut out their opposition. Indeed, Hiroshima’s league success this season has mainly been based on a rock-solid defense that has allowed the division’s joint-low six goals so far! But, a lack of firepower in the final third has seen Hiroshi Jofuku’s side score precisely one goal per match in their last three J1 League home fixture, two of which arrived before the break.
Meanwhile, a 1-0 home win over Nagoya last time out gave Tokyo their first league victory after four fixtures (D3, L1) and saw them keep a clean sheet for the second game in a row. The visitors have yet to taste defeat on foreign soil this term, although a dip in form witnessed them go from three consecutive wins to three straight draws. Curiously, three of those six matches have featured over 3.5 goals and both teams scoring, with Kenta Hasegawa’s side shipping the opening goal in each. Slow-starting Tokyo have, in fact, conceded the opener in four of six J1 League trips this term, though completing a turnaround on two of those occasions.
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