|Full name||Albirex Niigata|
|Ground||Denka Big Swan Stadium,
|League||J. League Division 1|
|Website||Club home page|
Albirex Niigata (アルビレックス新潟 Arubirekkusu Nīgata?) is a Japanese J. League Division 1 association football club based in Niigata. Despite the club's relative youth, only joining the J. League in 1999, Albirex are one of Japan's best supported teams. In 2003, while still playing in the second tier of Japanese football (J2), Albirex attracted the best average crowd in the country of over 30,000. Since promotion to J1 in 2004 they have recorded an average crowd of over 38,000, and in 2005 Albirex were the first ever club in Japan to record an average gate of over 40,000.
For many years it had been a local autonomous amateur club, Niigata 11, that could never hope to see the light of day in an old Japan Soccer League dominated almost entirely by company teams. The creation of the J. League spurred the club to rise, and in the 1990s it began climbing fast through the divisions.
In 1998, Albirex Niigata joined the Japan Football League, and was merged into the J2 league after its creation in 1999. The team gradually became competitive and on 2001 and 2002 it came close to getting promoted to J1 and in 2003, it became the champion of J2 and finally joined the top flight.
The team name is made from combining the star Albireo of the constellation Cygnus (the Swan) and the Latin word Rex meaning 'king'. In 1997, due to copyright issues, the team name was changed from Albireo Niigata to the current Albirex Niigata.
In 2007, the uniform color will change. Until 2006, the color was orange – blue – orange, but from 2007 the color will be orange – orange – orange. This coordinate has not been adopted since 1996 when the team professionalized.
The success in Albirex Niigata gave a big impact to the entire Japanese sporting world including the professional baseball. It is because commercial correctness of structure of professional sports, and a regional sticking (effectiveness in Japan) was proven also in the local mainstay city. Moreover, it came for clarifying the possession of energy that it was farther larger than the expectation of the sports market in the local city without the population of the metropolitan area in the past, and local city citizens' localism feelings are very bigger to influence other a lot of sports and municipality.
Team name transition
- Niigata Eleven SC (Soccer Club) (1955)
- Albireo Niigata FC (1995)
- Albirex Niigata (1997)
Joining the J. League in 1999, its home towns are Niigata and Seiro. Until 2003, it used Niigata Perfectural Sport Ground as the home ground but since 2004, the team began using Niigata Stadium Big Swan as well and now plays most of its games there. In 2003, it set a record for highest attendance in the J. League with the cumulative total of around 660,000. Its practice grounds are Albirex's training facilities in Seiro Albillage and the Ijimino Sports Park (五十公野運動公園 Ijimino Undō Kōen?) in Shibata.
The club plays its home games in the Niigata Stadium "Big Swan", which is currently called the Tohoku Denryoku Big Swan Stadium through a sponsorship deal. The stadium was opened in 2001, and has a capacity of 42,300. Prior to this the club had played its matches in the Niigata City Athletic Stadium constructed in 1938 with a capacity of 18,000.
As of 1 April 2014 Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Out on loan
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
- J. League Division 2
- Hokushinetsu Football League
- Champions (3) : 1986, 1996, 1997
- Runners-up (1) : 1992
- Shakaijin Cup
- Runners-up (1) : 1995
|Active departments of Albirex|
|Football (Men's)||Football (Women's)||Football (Sng.)|
Since 2004, Albirex Niigata has selected a number of players for its satellite team in the S.League in Singapore, called Albirex Niigata Singapore. Albirex also has a women's team and joined L2 league (an equivalent of J2) in 2004. Albirex Ladies won the L2 title in 2006, and is going to join L1 in 2007.
The following clubs are affiliated with Albirex Niigata:
- Albirex Niigata FC Phnom Penh 
- Albirex Niigata FC (Singapore)
- Japan Soccer College (Hokushinetsu Football League)
- Albirex Niigata Ladies (L. League)
- Albirex Niigata Barcelona (Quarta Catalana)
In addition to the J-1 Albirex Niigata football team, there is an Niigata Albirex basketball club in the bj league, as well as a ski, snowboard, baseball, and track and field team. Though the teams share the same name, management and finances are completely separate for each team.
- Niigata-Nippo. 11 years-History of Albirex Niigata (2007), pp. 2–10.
- "Albirex won the promotion slot" Niigata-Nippo: p. 1. 24 November 2003.
- "Club guide : Albirex Niigata" (in Japanese). J.League. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
- "Venture spirits, Hiroshi Ikeda interview" (in Japanese). Biz STYLE. 27 December 2007. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
- "History of Niigata stadium" (in Japanese). Albirex Niigata. and Niigata Urban Flowering and Greenery Foundation Group. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
- "2006 Nadeshiko League" (in Japanese). Nadeshiko League. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
- "Albirex Niigata Phnom Penh FC for 2014" (in English). Goal Singapore. Retrieved 16 October 2013.
- "Albirex Niigata Barcelona website" (in Japanese). Retrieved 27 January 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Albirex Niigata.|
- Official website (Japanese)