Defenders 2011 assessment   Leave a comment

Kim Min Je = B-
The brightest spark for me this season, his stamina down the wings and willingness to attack could make the 4231 formation work as he offers natural width while our wingers like to play inside.
Lost his place due to some poor positioning when defending, and this is definitely something he needs to work on. A full season in J2 would be an excellent place to learn, and I really hope he stays.

Tatsunori Yamagata = C
Started the season in good form and was one of our better players; defending tenaciously and getting forward quite well. His game is based almost entirely on stamina, and by the end of the season this seemed to have gone. I don’t know if it was from being tired, or from giving up, but it reached a point when he was dropped from the team and was among the earliest to be announced to be leaving the club after 200 games.

Takumi Wada = C-
There must be a reason why this guy has been relegated so many times in his career. Came in at left-back half-way through the season and was terrible. Got better with more games, and looked pretty decent at times, but should probably start looking for a solid J2 career rather than continual relegations and failed promotion campaigns.

Daiki Niwa = C- Had a difficult job being at the back of a struggling team and with a different defensive partner every couple of weeks, but did alright for most of the season. Needed to be a star player this season and against Gamba Osaka he was, unfortunately it didn’t happen often enough. Bullied off the ball too many times.

Makato Tanaka = D
Collecting 40m yen a season he didn’t really prove his worth. Was always going to be his last season, but it pretty much ended when returning to old team Jubilo Iwata and getting totally destroyed. Came back late in the season for a couple of farewell matches, but thankfully he has realised it is time to retire gracefully.

Shogo Kobara = C+
Took a while to get his first game, but then when he did he was much better than I was expecting. With a settled centre-back partner he might be good enough for a low level J1 team. He didn’t get a settled partner, and was caught out on positioning several times. Will hopefully stay next year and get someone to play 85% of games alongside him.

Kazuki Yamaguchi = C-
Hard to be too tough on him because he has never gone hiding, and seems to know his limitations as a player. When used as a blocker to throw himself into last ditch tackles he is pretty good. When used as a more cultured defender needed to work to a shape and pass the ball around he is being asked to do stuff he can’t do.

Yosuke Miyaji = D-
Didn’t really look good enough in any of the short opportunities he was given this year. He isn’t young any more, and you have to think about how much better he will ever get. Maybe he could do a decent back-up job in J2 if he is cheap, but won’t offer any long-term solution at J1/top J2 level.

Tokio Hatamoto = C
A game on the bench and regular outings for the reserves. Defenders take a little longer to mature so I wouldn’t expect him in the first team this year, but should be trying to get substitute appearances next season. Looked composed in the one chance I saw him in a friendly.

Posted December 13, 2011 by avispafukuoka in Opinion

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