|Full name||Football Club Mito HollyHock Ibaraki|
|Nickname(s)||HollyHock, FC Mito|
|Ground||K's denki Stadium Mito
|Manager||Tetsuji Hashiratani (2011-)|
|League||J. League Division 2|
|Website||Club home page|
Mito HollyHock (水戸ホーリーホック Mito Hōrīhokku?) is a Japanese professional football (soccer) club, currently playing in the J. League Division 2. The team's hometown is located in Mito, Ibaraki Prefecture.
The club was founded in 1990 as Prima Aseno FC by the factory workers of Prima Ham (a food company) in Tsuchiura. It changed its name to Prima Ham FC Tsuchiura and gained promotion to the Japan Football League after finishing as runner-up in the 1996 Regional League play-off. It merged with FC Mito (founded in 1994) and re-branded itself as Mito HollyHock before the start of the 1997 season when Prima Ham decided to discontinue its financial support to the club.
Mito's application to play in the inaugural 1999 season of J. League Division 2 was initially turned down due to an unstable financial and fan base. However, after finishing 3rd in the Japan Football League in 1999 and gaining support, the club was invited into the J. League in 2000.
Being a traditionally weak club in the league, Mito has tended to play a defensive game and has proven successful at it. This stinginess at the back is often referred to as "Mito-nachio" after the Catenaccio playing style, which is also a pun on the hometown's local specialty, Mito natto.
Recently, though, the team has been attempting implementation of stronger offensive tactics in an attempt to gain momentum for a promotion bid.
As of February 14, 2014. Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Record as J. League member
|Season||Div.||Tms.||Pos.||Attendance/G||J. League Cup||Emperor's Cup|
|2000||J2||10||9||2,021||1st Round||3rd Round|
|2001||J2||12||11||1,559||1st Round||3rd Round|
- Tms. = Number of teams
- Pos. = Position in league
- Attendance/G = Average league attendance
Notable former players
Images (from the former home stadium)
Mito vs. Sapporo, November 18, 2006