Toyama 0 – 1 Avispa
This will never be looked back upon as a great match, but in terms of this season it could be a very important one.
Facing the club 2nd from bottom in the league we would always hope to win, even away from home, but it took an 87th minute winner after going long periods of the game without looking like scoring to seal the points.
How we get the win isn’t all that important, and I hope that club can feel a little more relaxed to play a bit better in the coming games and give the fans something more to cheer.
The game was always looking like Avispa could win after Suzuki and Sueyoshi were managing to control midfield and get to the 2nd ball quite regularly; something they have failed to do in many games this season.
Unfortunately having got the ball we didn’t have quite enough quality to unlock a determined Toyama defence with only half chances being created for Jogo, who again was playing with great energy and trying to get beyond the last defender.
Alongside him Nishida Go really isn’t that good a player, but he tries hard and helps to make space with his running.
It was on the wings where I thought we should have a good chance to break the Toyama defence, but Naruoka was really quite poor on the left and Kihara seems to run down blind alleys quite often, perhaps trying a bit too hard.
At the back Tsutsumi had been brought in for new father Wada, and was solid defensively and seems very calm. He is very good at putting in long diagonal balls across the field, but isn’t as fast as I would normally expect from a full-back.
Toyama did have a couple of chances to score themselves. Most notably from a long bouncing ball similar to what Yamagata scored with last week, but this time the attacker managed to head over Kamiyama and just wide.
It looked like for all Avispa’s possession we would only get a draw, until late on when Sakata came on and we piled forward to have 6 players in the box. Omata came forward to fill the left wing spot which Naruoka had avoided all game and crossed for Koga to head across goal in his strikers role from midweek against Tochigi.
Repeating the finish against Yamagata, Jogo made a difficult volley look easy to take all three points.
Generally it wasn’t a great attacking performance, but we were much better in defence; almost entirely because we have finally dropped the hopeless zone defence at corners and despite facing a team with many tall defenders looked pretty good: especially kamiyama who came out for several crosses well.
Man of the Match
Close run thing with Koga at the back, but he has come in when we needed a striker and scored goals. A strikeforce of Jogo and Sakata? I’m not sure how it works.