vs. Tochigi SC (Emperor’s Cup preview)   Leave a comment

We have a break from the league this week, and I think it has come at a very welcome time. We have had a very difficult August and early September facing the hardest teams in the division in a row, and seen our league position drop down the table.
Performances have been a little patchy, and have seen a few experiments with formations and players have mixed results. The culmination of this was the match against JEF where we went back to a 433 which could easily morph into a 4231/451, and had the team really looking quite good.

Looking at the fixtures for the remainder of the season it isn’t unrealistic to think we could win all of them. I don’t think we will, but they certainly aren’t as hard as what we have played and we could. During this time I’d like to see the team stick to perfecting how they played on Saturday and be ready to start the next season without the upheaval of the last 3-4 years.

This weekend has a slight distraction to that as the Emperor’s Cup starts. We could look at it in 2 different ways:
i) Use it as extra games to try and get the team working together and getting more practice in preparation for 2014, while seeing which positions need more players.
ii) Give a rest to the first team players and experiment with some of the squad players to see who deserves some extra time.

I’d really like to do well in the Cup and test ourselves against a J1 team, but would personally favour option ii).

Avispa News
I’d keep with Kasagawa and Kazuki in defence to give them a game to try and forget their 5 minutes against JEF, but pair Kazuki with Hatamoto to see what he can do.
Min Je should get a game at left-back, but only if his future is known. At some point he has to go and join the Korean Army, if he is leaving in 3 months then it isn’t really worth giving him more experience. I’d say the same for Oh at right-back.

One of the positions we need to strengthen is midfield anchor. Nakahara has played their with almost no competition all season. This game could be used to see how Okada or Park does in that role and give Nakahara a break.

Kanakubo is the only player who can really step up and close the gap behind the high pressing forward line. I’d be interested to see if Ishizu could do this; he has the energy and tenacity and may do ok in the centre position of a 4231, but could also do with a rest.

Sakata definitely needs a rest, but this is a very good chance to see how he would do on the left forward role behind Punosevac. I don’t think he wants to play this role, but if it is sold with Punosevac providing the hold up play and him collecting the flick-ons it is actually a more attacking striker’s role than what he has been doing so far and not someone hitting the corner flag.

Ushinohama could start on the right to give Jogo a rest, and see what next season might hold for him.

The team I would pick as a chance to test players and give others a rest….

………………….Punosevac………………
Sakata………………………………Ushinohama
………….Ishizu……………………………
………………………….Funayama………….
………………….Okada…………………….
Min Je……..Kazuki………..Hatamoto…..Miyamoto
…………………Kasagawa…………………..

Bench: Kim, Oh, Tsutsumi, Chris, Kanakubo, Jogo, Nishida

Posted September 7, 2013 by avispafukuoka in Preview

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