Kashima Antlers win J-League and will play in Club World Cup
The J-League champions, who were crowned after beating Urawa Red Diamonds on aggregate, will represent Japan at the mini-tournament.
Kashima Antlers were crowned J1-League champions on Saturday night and as such will represent the host nation in the 2016 Club World Cup, which takes place between December 8 and 18 in Osaka and Yokohama.
Kashima defeated Urawa Red Diamaonds on away goals with a 2-2 aggregate victory in the competition’s final stage, winning the second leg 2-1 in the Saitama Stadium 2002 to claim their first title since 2009.
Semi-final hero Mu Kanazaki, who scored the only goal of the game against Kawasaki Frontale to send Kashima through to the final, was again his side’s saviour as he netted twice to overturn a 2-0 aggregate deficit opened up when the home side’s Shinzo Koroki scored after seven minutes.
Auckland City await in playoff round
Kashima will make their debut in the Club World Cup against Auckland City in the playoff round, with the winners of that match going through a quarter-final meeting with South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns. The winners of that game will face Atlético Nacional, the 2016 Copa Libertadores champions.
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