There was no winning start for defending champions Yokohama F. Marinos as Ange Postecoglou's side were held to a 0-0 draw by Urawa Red Diamonds as the J. League's first division resumed on Saturday.
The long lay-off - the season was suspended after just one round of fixtures played in February - clearly affected both sides as they struggled to find their rhythm behind closed doors at the Saitama Stadium.
“We were a little bit slow (in the first half), restarts, lots of free-kicks. We were taking too many touches with the ball,” said Marinos head coach Postecoglou. “I said at halftime to move the ball quicker, play our football and move our tempo up, and we did that.
“In the second half we picked up the tempo and created some opportunities, we just couldn’t score a goal.”
In other matches, 2019 runners-up FC Tokyo won 1-0 at Kashiwa Reysol, thanks to Tsuyoshi Watanabe's 68th-minute effort.
Consadole Sapporo defeated Yokohama FC 2-1 while Tatsuya Tanaka hit a brace as Oita Trinita defeated Sagan Tosu 2-0.
Cerezo Osaka defeated Gamba Osaka 2-1, as did Kawasaki Frontale who edged Kashima Antlers by the same scoreline.
Shimizu S-Pulse squandered an early lead to fall 2-1 to Nagoya Grampus while Vegalta Sendai edged Shonan Bellmare 1-0.
Sanfrecce Hiroshima completed the fixtures with a 3-0 win over Andres Iniesta-led Vissel Kobe.
Fans are expected to be allowed for matches from July 10, with stadiums limited to 5,000 supporters.
- GWC Announced As Regional Supporter and Official Logistics Provider for FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™
- AFC and AURORA Expand Pioneering Youth Development Programme Across Asia
- AFC Prez Khalifa: The Return Of Asian Competition Offers A Noble Message In The Fight Against COVID-19 Pandemic
- COVID Pandemic: Former Iraq International Passes Away
- Asian Football: Football Resumes In Thailand and Vietnam