|Japanese League (2nd tier)|
| Japan Soccer League Second Division (1972–1992)|
(former) Japan Football League Division 1 (1992–1993)
(former) Japan Football League (1994–1998)
J.League Division 2 (1999–2014)
J2 League (2015–present)
|Number of teams|
|22 (2021 season)|
|Tokushima Vortis (2020)|
|Most successful club|
| Consadole Sapporo |
A national second tier of Japanese league football was first established in 1972, as the Japan Soccer League Second Division. In 1992, with the breakup of the JSL and restructuring of the top flight into the J.League, the (former) Japan Football League became the second tier. In 1999 the J.League has established a second division (officially known as J2 League ).
Numbers in parentheses indicate number of wins at the date.
|Toyota Motors||Tanabe Pharmaceuticals|
|Eidai Industries||Kofu SC †|
|Yomiuri SC †||Fujitsu †|
|Tanabe Pharmaceuticals †||Yomiuri SC †|
|Fujitsu||Yomiuri SC †|
|Yomiuri SC (2)||Nissan Motors †|
|Honda Motors †||Nissan Motors|
|Toshiba Horikawacho †||Yamaha Motors|
|Honda Motors (2)||Fujitsu †|
|Nippon Kokan||Nissan Motors|
|Yamaha Motors||Toshiba SC †|
|Nippon Kokan (2)||Sumitomo Metal Industries †|
|Sumitomo Metal Industries||ANA Yokohama|
|Matsushita Electric||Mazda SC|
|Sumitomo Metal Industries (2)||Toyota Motors|
|ANA Yokohama||Matsushita Electric|
|Toshiba SC (2)||Hitachi|
|Mitsubishi Heavy Industries||Toyota Motors|
|Fujita SC ‡||Sumitomo Metal Industries|
† Not promoted to Division 1 due to losing promotion/relegation series
‡ Not promoted to the newly formed J.League
An extra season of Japanese football was done by the Japan Football League in late 1992, as the top flight clubs were still re-organizing and adopting new identities before the J.League kicked off in 1993.
|Yamaha Motors † (2)||Hitachi †|
|Shonan Bellmare (2)||Júbilo Iwata|
† Not promoted to J.League
In 1994, the Japan Football League Division 2 was abolished.
|Cerezo Osaka||Kashiwa Reysol|
|Fukuoka Blux||Kyoto Purple Sanga|
|Honda Motors † (3)||Vissel Kobe|
|Consadole Sapporo (3)||Tokyo Gas †|
|Tokyo Gas †||Kawasaki Frontale †|
† Not promoted to J.League (J1 after 1998)
From 1999 to 2014 the league was known as J.League Division 2.
|Season||Winner||Runner-up||Third place||Playoff winner|
|Kawasaki Frontale (2)||FC Tokyo||Oita Trinita †|
|Consadole Sapporo (4)||Urawa Red Diamonds||Oita Trinita †|
|Kyoto Purple Sanga||Vegalta Sendai||Montedio Yamagata †|
|Oita Trinita||Cerezo Osaka||Albirex Niigata †|
|Albirex Niigata||Sanfrecce Hiroshima||Kawasaki Frontale †|
|Kawasaki Frontale (3)||Omiya Ardija||Avispa Fukuoka ‡|
|Kyoto Purple Sanga (2)||Avispa Fukuoka||Ventforet Kofu|
|Yokohama FC||Kashiwa Reysol||Vissel Kobe|
|Consadole Sapporo (5)||Tokyo Verdy 1969||Kyoto Sanga|
|Sanfrecce Hiroshima||Montedio Yamagata||Vegalta Sendai ‡|
|Vegalta Sendai||Cerezo Osaka||Shonan Bellmare|
|Kashiwa Reysol (2)||Ventforet Kofu||Avispa Fukuoka|
|FC Tokyo (2)||Sagan Tosu||Consadole Sapporo|
|Ventforet Kofu||Shonan Bellmare||Kyoto Sanga †||Oita Trinita (6th)|
|Gamba Osaka (2)||Vissel Kobe||Kyoto Sanga †||Tokushima Vortis (4th)|
|Shonan Bellmare (3)||Matsumoto Yamaga||JEF United Chiba †||Montedio Yamagata (6th)|
|Omiya Ardija||Júbilo Iwata||Avispa Fukuoka||Avispa Fukuoka (3rd)|
|Consadole Sapporo (6)||Shimizu S-Pulse||Matsumoto Yamaga †||Cerezo Osaka (4th)|
|Shonan Bellmare (4)||V-Varen Nagasaki||Nagoya Grampus||Nagoya Grampus (3rd)|
|Matsumoto Yamaga||Oita Trinita||Yokohama FC †|
|Kashiwa Reysol (3)||Yokohama FC||Omiya Ardija †|
|Tokushima Vortis||Avispa Fukuoka||V-Varen Nagasaki †|
† Not promoted to J1
‡ Not promoted to J1 due to losing promotion/relegation series
For play-off winners, the number in parentheses indicates their position after the end of the season.
Clubs in bold compete in J2 as of 2021 season. Clubs in italic no longer exist.
Years in italic indicate seasons of amateur football (Japan Soccer League D2 and former Japan Football League).
|Club||Winners||Runners-up||Winning seasons||Runners-up seasons|
|Consadole Sapporo||1979, 1988–89, 1997, 2000, 2007, 2016||1982|
|Shonan Bellmare||1991–92, 1993, 2014, 2017||2012|
|Kashiwa Reysol||1990–91, 2010, 2019||1988–89, 1992, 1994, 2006|
|Kawasaki Frontale||1976, 1999, 2004||1974, 1980, 1998|
|Honda FC||1978, 1980, 1996|
|Tokyo Verdy||1974, 1977||1975, 1976, 2007|
|Júbilo Iwata||1982, 1992||1979, 1993, 2015|
|Kashima Antlers||1984, 1986–87||1983, 1991–92|
|FC Tokyo||1998, 2011||1997, 1999|
|Kyoto Sanga||2001, 2005||1995|
|Gamba Osaka||1985, 2013||1987–88|
|NKK SC||1981, 1983|
|Sanfrecce Hiroshima||2008||1985, 1990–91, 2003|
|Nagoya Grampus||1972||1986–87, 1989–90|
|Cerezo Osaka||1994||2002, 2009|
|Ventforet Kofu||2012||1973, 2010|
|Avispa Fukuoka||1995||2005, 2020|
|Urawa Red Diamonds||1989–90||2000|
|Yokohama F. Marinos||0||3||1977, 1978, 1981|
|Vissel Kobe||1996, 2013|
The J1 League or simply J1 is the top division of the Japan Professional Football League and the top professional Football J.League in Japan. It is one of the most successful leagues in Asian club football. Currently, the J1 League is the first level of the Japanese association football league system. The second tier is represented by the J2 League. It is currently sponsored by Meiji Yasuda Life and thus officially known as the Meiji Yasuda J1 League. Until the 2014 season it was named the J.League Division 1.
Tokyo Verdy is a Japanese professional football club based in Chōfu, Tokyo. The club plays in the J2 League, the second tier of football in the country.
Kawasaki Frontale is a Japanese professional football club based in Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo. The club plays in the J1 League, which is the top tier of football in the country. Their home stadium is Kawasaki Todoroki Stadium, in Nakahara Ward, in the central area of Kawasaki.
Avispa Fukuoka is a Japanese professional football club, currently play in the J1 League. The team is located in Hakata, Fukuoka. "Avispa" means "wasp" in Spanish. They were originally called Fujieda Blux and based in Fujieda, Shizuoka before moving to Fukuoka in 1994. After becoming the champions of 1995 Japan Football League as Fukuoka Blux, and being admitted to the J. League since 1996 season, Avispa Fukuoka has the longest history as a J. League club being uncrowned in any nationwide competitions such as J. League Division 1, Division 2, J. League Cup, or Emperor's Cup.
Shonan Bellmare is a Japanese professional football club based in Hiratsuka, in the west of Kanagawa Prefecture, part of the Greater Tokyo Area. The club plays in the J1 League, which is the top tier of football in the country. Their home stadium is Hiratsuka Athletics Stadium. Shonan refers to a coastal area along Sagami Bay that includes Hiratsuka. Bellmare is a portmanteau of the Italian words bello and mare, meaning "beautiful sea".
Kashiwa Reysol is a Japanese professional football club based in Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, part of the Greater Tokyo Area. The club plays in the J1 League, which is the top tier of football in the country. Their home stadium is Sankyo Frontier Kashiwa Stadium, also known as "Hitachidai". Reysol is a portmanteau of the Spanish words Rey and Sol, meaning "Sun King". The name alludes to their parent company Hitachi, whose name is associated with the sun in Japanese. The club was formed in 1940 and was a founding member of the Japan Soccer League (JSL) in 1965. Since the league's inception, they have spent the majority of their existence in the top tier of Japanese football. They have been Japanese League champions twice in 1972 and 2011, and have won three League Cups in 1976, 1999 and 2013, and three Emperor's Cups in 1972, 1975 and 2012.
Ōita Trinita is a Japanese football club currently playing in J1 League, having been promoted in 2018 after a 5-year absence from Japan's top flight. The club's home town is Ōita city, but the club draws support from Beppu, Saiki, and the entire Ōita Prefecture.
JEF United Chiba, full name JEF United Ichihara Chiba and also known as JEF Chiba, is a Japanese professional football club that plays in the J2 League. On 1 February 2005, the club changed its name from JEF United Ichihara to the current name after Chiba city had joined Ichihara, Chiba as its hometown in 2003. Of its club name, JEF is taken from the JR East and Furukawa Electric companies and United is meant to represent the unity of the club and its home city.
The J.League, officially Japan Professional Football League is Japan's professional football league including the first division J1 League, second division J2 League and third division J3 League of the Japanese association football league system. J1 League is one of the most successful leagues in Asian club football. It is currently sponsored by Meiji Yasuda Life and thus officially known as the Meiji Yasuda J.League.
Japan Soccer League, or JSL, was the top flight football league in Japan between 1965 and 1991/92, and was the precursor to the current professional league, the J. League. JSL was the second national league of a team sport in Japan after the professional Japanese Baseball League that was founded in 1936. JSL was the first-ever national league of an amateur team sport in Japan.
Abha Football Club is a professional Saudi Arabian association football club based in Abha that is currently playing in the Saudi Professional League, the highest tier of Saudi football. Their home stadium is Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Stadium.
The Japan Football League, also known as simply the JFL is the 4th tier of the Japanese association football league system, positioned beneath the three divisions of the J.League. The league features fully professional teams that hold J.League associate membership among its ranks.
Roasso Kumamoto is a Japanese football club based in Kumamoto, the capital city of Kumamoto Prefecture. The club currently plays in the J3 League, which is the third tier of football in the country. Roasso is a portmanteau of the Italian words rosso and asso, meaning "red ace".
The Japanese Regional Football League Competition is a nationwide play-off tournament meant as a transition for Japanese football clubs competing in regional leagues to the Japan Football League.
The J2 League or simply J2 is the second division of the Japan Professional Football League and the second level of the Japanese association football league system. The top tier is represented by the J1 League. It is currently sponsored by Meiji Yasuda Life and it is thus officially known as the Meiji Yasuda J2 League. Until the 2014 season it was named the J.League Division 2.
The 2013 J.League Division 2 season is the 42nd season of the second-tier club football in Japan and the 15th season since the establishment of J2 League. The regular season began on 3 March and ended on 24 November, followed by the promotion play-offs among four clubs ranked between 3rd and 6th at the end of regular season. Gamba Osaka became champions, and Vissel Kobe became runners-up, both returned to J1 immediately after one season at J2. The other promoted team is third runners-up Tokushima Vortis, who won the promotion playoff final, defeating Kyoto Sanga FC. With the win, Vortis are making their J1 debut, becoming the first professional Shikoku football club to compete in the top division of their national league.
J3 League or simply J3 is the third division of Japan Professional Football League that has established a third-tier professional association football league in Japan starting in 2013.
Japanese football in 2013.