Soccer / J. League

Massimo Ficcadenti to replace ousted Yahiro Kazama at Grampus

Kyodo

J. League first-division side Nagoya Grampus said Monday that head coach Yahiro Kazama has been dismissed and Italian trainer Massimo Ficcadenti will be his successor.

The 57-year-old Ficcadenti managed FC Tokyo for two full seasons from 2014. In 2016, he was brought in to manage Sagan Tosu and steered the club until he was replaced in October 2018.

Grampus was in 11th place with 31 points after 26 rounds, four points above 16th-placed Sagan with eight games remaining. The J1’s 17th- and 18th-placed finishers are relegated to the second division, while the team in 16th place has to survive a promotion-relegation playoff in order to remain in the top flight.

Kazama took over the reins at Grampus in 2017 following the club’s first demotion to J2 and steered the league cofounder back to the top flight in one season. The Toyota Stadium residents narrowly avoided relegation in 2018, however, finishing in 15th place on goal difference.