Having brought in quite a few attacking players the defence was the area which looked in most need of reinforcements after recent transfer activity.
This has been partly addressed with the arrival of three defenders from the fringes of J1 squads.
The players who are on Avispa’s books but are yet to be confirmed as re-signed are Rokutan, Takumi Wada, Shogo Kobara, Kim Min Je, Suzuki Jun, Kosuke Nakamachi, Yutaka Takahashi, and Kosuke Shigematsu.
Of these I expect Kobara and Suzuki to re-sign, and really hope that Kim does.
Joining Jubilo from University he has only played 31 games in 5 years which means that at age 27 he is in need of some experience on the pitch and will follow the route of Matsuura in heading to Fukuoka to get it.
Playing at left-back I am concerned that this means that Kim Min Je may well be leaving the club, or wouldn’t be an immediate choice for left-back if he does stay. It is rumoured he has to return to Korea for military service so this may be happening.
Okada seems to be a battler type full-back (or midfielder) being likened to Gattuso in style. If he can put in some big tackles in front of the Ultras next season he will become popular very quickly.
Joining comments…”I’m Okada Ryu from Jubilo Iwata. I want to become familiar with Fukuoka as quickly as possible to play to my best. I will strive to be a driving force towards promotion to J1. Thank-you very much to everyone in Fukuoka for today.”
As a tall, experienced central defender it is exactly what we need, and just need to hope that at 33 years old he still has a couple of years in him to fill the gap left by Makoto Tanaka.
Having played for 15 years at J1 level this will be his first drop into the second division and hopefully he will have the quality to mean he can be back in J1 next year.
A Fukuoka native he left Higashi Fukuoka High School 15 years ago to go to Nagoya, and can see this as something of a home-coming.
He is a hard-tackling stopper type defender.
Joining comments…”I am excited that after 15 years I am able to play soccer in Fukuoka again after High School. I want to be recognised as part of Avispa Fukuoka as soon as possible.”
Again a player who hasn’t had a lot of time on the pitch, but will have trained with J1 standard players and wil hopefully know what it takes to be successful at that level.
After being a promising youngster who got recognised at U-18, U-19 and U-20 levels he lost his way a bit and bounced between clubs in J1 and J2 performing well enough at Bellmare to be picked up by Cerezo as the got promotion, but then see his opportunities limited.
Will hopefully come with something to prove, but seems to also play in a left-back role although he is quite tall so may be able to play in the middle.
At 28 years old and with less than 100 games played at professional level I’d hope he still had a lot of running in him, and can hopefully enjoy his football in Fukuoka and get enthusiasm for the game after a long career on the bench.
Joining comments…”having talked it is now time to join Avispa Fukuoka. I will try my best to become a force to return to J1. Thank you for your support.”
Possible line-up from signed players (starting to look pretty good!)
..Okada…….Omata…..Koga……O Chan Hyon
…………………..Kamiyama………………….(edited Re: Steve’s comment on Kihara below)