And so the season continues, and Avispa continue their descent into the bottom 5. Looking at the squad, and money spent, it is fairly inconceivable for them to be doing as badly as they are this season, surely there has to be an incredible run of form at some point.
Welcoming Kusatsu to Level-5 stadium, they are a team who have never impressed me that much but seem to be able to beat and draw with us every time we play.
This sort of sums them up, a team who have no flashy players, or stand-out talent, but as with many clubs in J2 are good at squeezing out results and making the most of what is available to them (obviously Avispa is not included in this group).
Again I expect us to win, but have said that so many times and then seen us lose badly it is turning into a bad joke.
At least our poor league position may mean there are some good odds available if you wanted to bet on a game.
I think Avispa have to find a way to take Tsutsumi out of the team, but Oh is now listed as injured, and the only other alternative is Wada. With a 29 man squad it is a shambolic situation, and the defence will probably stay unchanged.
Suzuki Jun has now been installed as Captain, I don’t know why. Last week we had Koga and Okada both playing who have been Captain, but it was Suzuki who ended up with the armband. Don’t know what Maeda has seen which I haven’t, but he will probably stay in the team with Okada. Sueyoshi must be wondering what has happened to his career. J2 Rookie of the year, to bench player for a team at the bottom of J2 in 18 months.
Kihara and Ishizu will stay on the bench, but only on reputation as Naruoka has done very little this season.
Nishida did ok last week and will probably start with Skata who remains in terrible form.
Experienced midfielder (and ex-Avispa player) Matsushita is suspended for this game, but Thespa have other experienced midfielders who will come in and try to put pressure on our central 2.
If they have watched any recent footage of Avispa they will be aiming everything at the right-side of our defence where another ex-Avispa player Lincoln could have a field day.
Avispa 2 – 0 Thespa
I’m staying optimistic, just because it would seem so crazy to be predicting anything but a home win against Thespa at the start of the season.
Would really like to see Nishida or Ishizu score their first goals.