FC Ryukyu was established in 2003 with the specific goal of bringing J.League football to Japan's southernmost prefecture. The goal was by no means an easy one to achieve. Okinawa prefecture is made up of numerous small islands, located hundreds of miles south of the rest of the country. And that was just the first of the hurdles facing the team. But FC Ryukyu has been a dynamic and exciting team from the very start. The club's crest alone is worthy of a spot in a professional league, with its Okinawan lion-dogs, red eyes ablaze, and the boastful inscription "since 2003". As its motto, the team selected a delightful bit of ersatz-English, declaring proudly: "They Began To Run". . . . And that motto proved to be prophetic. The team scored 93 goals in its first season in the Okinawa Prefectural league -- in a nine-game season!
So far, Ryukyu has not registered an official mascot, but almost everyone expects it to be based on the "shishi", which is usually translated into English as "Okinawan Lion Dog". Although J.Soccer is not in the habit of making bold predictions, in this case we are pretty sure that the mascot will not only be a Lion Dog, but his name will probably be "Ryu"