Cerezo Osaka and Gamba Osaka go head-to-head in their J League Cup fixture on Saturday
Cerezo Osaka entertain arch-rivals Gamba Osaka at the Kincho Stadium in J League Cup action on Saturday.
The hosts sit atop the Group A standings with three wins in four games, while Gamba Osaka have just one win to their name and are currently in third place.
The home side suffered their first defeat of the cup campaign last time around as they fell to a 3-1 loss to Kashima Antlers. In their previous league outing, they played out a goalless draw against Avispa Fukuoka.
Gamba Osaka, on the other hand, secured their first win of the campaign in their previous cup fixture, defeating Oita Trinita 2-0. In their previous league outing, they suffered a 1-0 loss at home to Shonan Bellmare.
Cerezo Osaka vs Gamba Osaka Head-to-Head
This will be the 66th edition of the Osaka derby across all competitions. The visitors hold a 28-24 advantage against the hosts while 13 games have ended in draws.
They last met in the opening fixture of the competition in February. It was a closely contested game, with Cerezo securing a 3-2 win thanks to Hikaru Nakahara’s 84th-minute winner.
Cerezo Osaka form guide (all competitions): D-L-W-L-W
Gamba Osaka form guide (all competitions): L-W-D-D-W
Cerezo Osaka vs Gamba Osaka Team News
Hinata Kida is the only player whose involvement in the game remains doubtful.
Doubtful: Hinata Kida
Takashi Usami has not played a game for the Nerazzurri since March after picking up a knee injury. Masaaki Higashiguchi is a long-term absentee with an ACL injury.
Injuries: Takashi Usami, Masaaki Higashiguchi
Cerezo Osaka vs Gamba Osaka Predicted XIs
Cerezo Osaka (4-4-2): Jin-Hyeon Kim (GK); Matej Jonjić, Ryuya Nishio, Ryosuke Yamanaka, Riku Matsuda; Takashi Inui, Riki Harakawa, Hiroaki Okuno, Hikaru Nakahara; Hiroto Yamada, Bruno Mendes
Gamba Osaka (4-4-2): Jun Ichimori (GK); Keisuke Kurokawa, Gen Shoji, Genta Miura, Ryu Takao; Hideki Ishige, Dawhan, Mitsuki Saito, Kosuke Onose; Patric, Hiroto Yamami
Cerezo Osaka vs Gamba Osaka Prediction
Both sides have been a bit inconsistent throughout the season. The hosts have outscored Gamba 13-12 in J1 League fixtures and also boast a better defensive record, conceding nine goals against the 13 let in by the visitors.
Sakura have posted better numbers in the cup fixtures but suffered their first loss of the tournament last time around and it seems they have run out of steam.
We don’t see them losing at home, so the game should end in a high-scoring draw.
Prediction: Cerezo Osaka 2-2 Gamba Osaka