Japanese media: The 30th anniversary of the J-League, the chairman of the league hopes to cultivate big clubs to promote the development of the league

February 17 This season, Japan, across the sea, will usher in the professionalization of their football league
30th year.
The Japanese media “Asahi Shimbun” published an article analyzing the current chairman Yoshikazu Nonomura’s business development strategy.

The J-League will usher in the opening game of the new season today, February 17, which is also the 30th year of the professionalization of the Japanese Football League.
The J-League has been adhering to the community-based and sports-based approach to promote local revitalization.
At present, a milestone has been reached, and a new development path is to be explored.
From the “escort system” to “free competition”, if the J-League, which has spread all over Japan, is compared to a pyramid, then the future blueprint of the J-League is to achieve overall development by raising the top of the pyramid.

“Clubs have to compete very seriously,” J-League chairman Yoshikazu Nonomura said at a news conference after the J-League council meeting in late January.
Currently in his second year as chairman of the J-League, he has always hoped to cultivate “big clubs” in the J-League that can combine world-class football and economic strength, and can gain the support of overseas fans.
This is his determination all along.

The J-League started its professionalization in 1993. From the first 10 clubs, it has made solid progress after 30 years of development.
This season, the total number of J1-J3 third-level league clubs will reach 60, distributed in 41 prefectures.
The J-League is currently in Japan and is as popular a sports league as professional baseball.
It has been so successful that professional leagues in other sports, such as basketball’s B-League, have begun to emulate its community-based philosophy.

Yoshikazu Nonomura is the sixth chairman of the J-League and the first chairman from the J-League.
He served as the chairman of Hokkaido Sapporo Consadole Club, which he played for in his player era, for nearly 9 years. Through active signings, including the acquisition of former Japanese national team player Shinji Ono, he established the team’s offensive football style.
Successfully helped this club that had been hovering in the J2 league gain a firm foothold in the J1 league.
He is also a person with ideas. He focused on the Asian market very early and took the lead in acquiring star players from Southeast Asia from Vietnam and Thailand.

Such a chairman is not satisfied with the current status of the J-League.

Let the J-League team go to the world

For example, the broadcast copyright fee paid by the streaming media DAZN is now the main source of income for the J-League.
In the 12 years from 2017-28, the J-League was able to receive a total of 223.9 billion yen in broadcast revenue.
According to Deloitte’s data, the Premier League, which is regarded as the world’s top league, has broadcast costs as high as approximately 53.93 billion yen (approximately 3.77 billion euros) in the 20-21 season alone.
Even if it is compared at the club level, the average annual income of J1 clubs is about 4.159 billion yen (2021), which is only about 10% of England.

The market value of Japanese clubs is far lower than that of their European counterparts, meaning they cannot attract the famous overseas players they once did.
Moreover, potential players landed in Europe before being promoted to the J-League, which also accelerated the “hollowing” of the J1 League.

As a countermeasure, Yoshikazu Nonomura formulated the policy of “top teams going to the world”, the purpose of which is to cultivate some large clubs to lead the entire J-League and drive the entire league into the next growth track.

For this reason, the J League will tilt the funds allocated to the clubs to the J1 League.
This fund is a very important source of income for professional clubs, accounting for about 10-20% of annual income.
At present, the amount allocated to J1 teams is about twice that of J2 teams, and the J League will increase this gap to five to six times in stages.

The purpose of the J-League is to give “clubs with ambitions to hit the top” (Nonomura Fanghe’s original words) a broader opportunity.
In 2024, in addition to the original dividends, 2.1 billion yen will be allocated to the top nine players in the J1 league.

Therefore, the “gap” between the upper and lower ranks will widen, but Yoshikazu Nonomura has also formulated another guideline, that is, “60 clubs will shine in each region.”
He believes: “The more clubs that grow into a global player, the higher the broadcast fee that the J-League can sell, which will help other clubs.”

J2 Club Executive: “Frankly, it hurts.”

Nonomura’s “big club concept” also makes people in the industry have different attitudes.

The 42-year-old Koizumi is the chairman of the Kashima Antlers Club, which has the most J1 league titles (8), commented: “The broadcast fees brought by a strong club will benefit the J-League. This is a grand strategy that looks at the world. We must
Take on this mission.” He is the chairman of Mercari, Japan’s largest second-hand idle trading platform, and has been in charge of the operation of Kashima Antlers since 2007. “The local presence of football clubs has become too routine.
a big problem.”

The middle and lower reaches of J1 clubs and the second and third tier league teams are cautious about this.
The 53-year-old Okura Satoshi is the chairman of Iwaki FC, which was promoted to J2 this year, and is also a member of the J-League Council. He said: “I am worried that the league will become a league in which only those big clubs win alternately. Nurturing big players
The purpose and benefits of the club cannot be fully said