It’s the off-season, a time when players can relax and think about how to build and improve for next season.
Some will sit back and do nothing over the next few months until the first game of 2014, others might think how they can come back better than before for the new season.
Over the next couple of posts I will list 1 way (just 1 way, many have lots of things to do but I’ve tried to list what I think is the most important) in which I think each of the players could improve their game.
#1 – Ryuichi Kamiyama Has done well this season to improve it but still needs to come out for more crosses. Has always been good at shot-stopping, but is also quite good at catching as a big guy. In the modern game will generally be given some protection by the referee so should aim to come out a bit further.
#23 – Yuichi Mizutani I can’t say too much too Mizutani, he is a fairly finished goalkeeper. His only issue is with fitness. Only he really knows the extent of his injury problems but needs to do what it takes to stay fit for the remainder of his contract.
#25 – Eita Kasagawa Needs games more than anything but should look at tapes of Edwin van der Sar and how a modern keeper can also operate as a pseudo-sweeper to add something to his game which might see him get on the pitch.
#29 – Kim Yeong Gi Has to start getting games. Similar to Eita needs to pick something to really sell himself as. Is he a sweeper, a ball-player, a penalty-king. Do something to put him in the manager’s mind.
#2 – Kim Min Je A tough one. The obvious choice would be that he has to improve his defensive positioning, another might be to improve his crossing and move further upfield. Personally I’d say he needs to spend less time hitting the weights. You very rarely see a professional footballer with the physique he has, not one which stays fit for very long any way.
#4 – Takuya Miyamoto. Find a club which loves you. I’ve thought he was hard done by this season, he always did ok on the pitch, but sometimes things don’t work out.
There would be many lower half J2 clubs where he would start every game and get the confidence which comes with that.
#5 – Masahiro Koga. Talk to the club and see if they can adjust your contract to pay for Coaching badges and a role at the club to give you a career for the next 30 years. You can’t do it on the pitch any more and are in danger of making yourself unloved at a club where you could be loved.
#6 – Kazuki Yamaguchi. Remember you’re a decent all heart defender. When it comes to headeing the ball away and throwing yourself in front of shots there is no-one better at the club. Don’t try to do too much on the ball, give the ball to others to do that.
#13 – Park Kun. Don’t get too close to attackers. There have been numerous times this season when you’ve been turned by getting too close and allowing someone to drop their shoulder. Give a push when the ball comes in and step back for the movement, or commit yourself only if you know you’re getting the ball.
#19 – Shunsuke Tsutsumi. Be the best defender in the division. Even when he was something of a joke last year I always said I thought he could be the best defender at the club if he just got serious. Stay at the club, concentrate fully on each game, and he is the best footballer at the club and best defender in J2 2014.
#21 – Hiroyuki Omata. Just stay fit. If that looks like you can’t make a full season drop to a club which will give you a 3 year contract.
#22 – Tokio Hatamoto. You need to add some nastiness to your game. The manager needs to see you in training as a nasty piece of work who will come on and hurt someone. It is great to be nice off the pitch but change when you get on it. You don’t have the size to dominate, you need to niggle through attackers. I’d serious recommend a winter in England playing on park pitches and seeing how defenders will stand on toes, and kick people into the air if they look like they might beat them for pace.
#31 – Oh Chang Hyon. Find the tape of your first substitute performance for Avispa where you did 2 moments of insane skill in attack. Was that just a fluke or can you actually do that? As the best natural athlete at the club you have the pace to get back if you do make a horrible mistake, let’s see something which makes the fans hold their breath when you get the ball in the opposition half.