Watch a short film of Kanto versus Kansai Old Boys at Koshien Stadium, 1936. The linesman's flag bears the JFA's three-legged crow.
This round matches 47 prefectural champions, the 2015 university champion, 22 J2 clubs, and two of the three clubs most recently promoted to J1.
As usual, I'm completely biased in favour of northern Japan. When was the Emperor's Cup last won by a club from north of the 36th parallel? 1935, and it was Kyungsung FC, from Seoul, Korea. The clubs most likely to end the north's cup drought are: Vegalta Sendai (10th in the 2016 J1 First Stage), Albirex Niigata (13th in the 2016 J1 First Stage), Consadole Sapporo (currently 1st in J2).
Match No. 9, Yokohama FC [5 - 0] Yamagata University
RKO'sMary of Scotlandopened 80 years ago today on July 30th, 1936, and starred Katherine Hepburn as Mary, Frederic March as Bothwell, Florence Eldridge as Elizabeth, Douglas Walton as Darnley, John Carradine as Rizzio, and a tremendous cast of famous stars in other roles, including Robert Barrat as Morton.
Today it's Morton versus Berwick in the final match of the group stage.
Morton and Berwick last met in Round 2 of the 2014-15 Challenge Cup: Morton won. They have played 36 league games altogether since 1955, Morton taking 21 wins, Berwick 11, with 4 draws. They have been in the same division four times in this the four division epoch, always in the third tier. Morton are generally a second-tier club, Berwick a fourth-tier club. In League Cup play, Morton have 3 wins, Berwick 1, with 3 draws.
Berwick made the semi-finals of the 1963-63 League Cup, and quarter-finals of the 1981-82 cup. They are bottom club in Group H.
The situation: If Morton earn 3 or 2 points today, they win Group H and move on to the Round of 16. If they earn only 1 point, or 0, Kilmarnock can overtake them. If Morton finish second in the group there is still the chance that they will be one of the four best runners-up and advance. A first-place finish with 11 points will most likely make them one of the seeded teams in the draw for the next round, depending on how things go in the other groups.
So far in this tournament Morton have not allowed a goal, except in the shoot-out.
We're also watching:
Kilmarnock [0 - 0] Albion Rovers. Albion win on penalties.
Raith [0 - 1] Alloa
The result of the Raith/Alloa game will affect Morton's seeding.
On Wednesday in Group D, in what might be a foreshadowing of the pyramid playoffs next May, Cove Rangers defeated Montrose 3 - 0.
Thursday it was Largs Thistle 4 - 1 versus a Greenock Morton development squad.
Jamie Lindsay has signed with Morton, on loan from Celtic. He was with Dumbarton last year.
Nacho Novo has signed with Glentoran of the Northern Irish league.
[Morton win 2 - 0. Goals by Lindsay and Quitongo. Morton win Group H and advance. Final Group H standings:
Maribor knocked Celtic out of the Champions League playoff round in 2014. The club's full name is Nogometni Klub Maribor. Nogomet is the word for football in Slovenian and Croatian.
Celtic and Aberdeen need some wins to improve Scotland's country coefficient.
Scotland's country coefficient is a figure UEFA calculates annually based on the performance of Scottish clubs in the Champions League and Europa League. The higher the coefficient the more Scottish clubs get to enter the European competitions, and the later they get to join. Scotland's recent coefficients are: