We can’t secure a play-off place in the next few games, but we can probably lose one.
As Golden Week starts we have 4 games in 8 days after losing to Tokyo Verdy on Friday, our first home defeat of the season.
It leaves us in 13th in the table below teams like Giravanz and Fagiano, despite having one of the best scoring records in the division.
Ventforet have looked like they might be the best team in the division at times this season, so things are not going to get any easier.
The game is calling out for Maeda to try and change things with our problem area – midfield. I’ve been calling for a middle 3 for weeks, and a quick look at 2ch shows that others are thinking the same.
After Omata didn’t do that well against Tokyo I think Kim might come back in at left-back, there were times when Sho was looking up to the left wing and seeing nothing. Other than that I think defence may stay the same, playing Oh would be too attacking.
I really want midfield changed with 5 across the middle with Sueyoshi, Suzuki and Okada as a central 3. This will give us the stability to launch attacks as Jogo and Sho can use the width to attack. I don’t expect this to happen with Suzuki and Sueyoshi likely to start and get swamped again.
As striker Sakata is certain to start, Yutaka may see himself get dropped. Either in favour of an extra midfielder, or for Samir or Nishida to come in.
I’d love to see Ishizu on the bench, his energy and enthusiasm is very useful.
Ventforet are likely to be playing with their strongest team with danger-man Davy up front needing to be closely watched. He is big and skillful, and going to be a big handful on crosses into the box. It may be easier to try to limit his supply line than mark him.
Trying to get balls to him is Avispa old-boy Genki Nagasato. He left Avispa under something of a cloud, and hasn’t played well against us since. Today may be his chance to cause problems, and is another erason to include Kim to combat his pace.
Ventforet 2 – 0 Avispa
I don’t think Maeda will change the midfield problem, despite it being a glaring problem and us being 13th in the table.
This will see whoever it is in midfield being out-numbered and too many balls being delivered to Davy.