Yokohama will enter the match as favourites to end the season as champions of Japan, with the advantage of a significantly better goal difference. Only a loss of four goals or more against Tokyo would see the title slip from their grasp.
For half an hour or so, they thought they had already won it. They took an early lead at Kawasaki and Tokyo fell behind to Urawa Red Diamonds, at home, in the 39th minute. When Yokohama striker Erik Lima finished a slick move to make it 3-0, the club’s fans thought they had won the title with a match to spare – but FC Tokyo defender Tsuyoshi Watanabe equalised a minute later, ensuring the league would be decided on the final day. At the final whistle, Tokyo’s fans at Ajinomoto Stadium knew their second successive draw had likely cost them a first J.League title.
Tokyo enter round 30 with a chance of finishing on top but only an upset landslide victory would be enough to take the title away from Postecoglou’s men.