The great win at the weekend was being played to a back-drop of being left-winger Daisuke Ishizu’s last game at the club.
He has been a popular player at the club, coming to us as a Designated Player from Fukuoka University and gradually becoming more and more important as his goals started to win matches and his stats for dribbling started to pick up plaudits.
Off the pitch he seems like a nice guy, who I ave seen give up his time off the training pitch to talk to fans, and as a home-town player had become one of the most popular players at the club.
Despite this he has never been what I would consider a genuine indispensible player for the club, and hasn’t been for any of the 4 managers I have seen him play under. Shinoda and Asano didn’t give him a game at all, Maeda used him mainly from the bench, and while Pusnik has seen him as a much more important player and given him far more chances he hasn’t ever really been guaranteed a place in the starting XI.
There must be a reason for all these managers to not 100% trust him to guarantee a first team spot.
I think a large part of this is that he can try to do too much individually when he has the ball, and needs to think more in terms of which decisions help the team more when he has the ball, and how to help win it back when he doesn’t have the ball.
The extra game time he has received under Pusnik is the only real way to improve these aspects of his game, and the experience he has had in the last season and a half has made him a much better player, but I think he is probably leaving 18 months too early.
As players like Genki Nagasato, Takuya Mastsuura, Jun Kanakubo (all better players than Ishizu in my opinion) have shown it is very difficult to improve your game much when you are sitting on a bench. As games go by you start to get a little rusty and in the case of Nagasato end up in Thailand.
Vissel Kobe are a very rich club and they can afford to leave him on the bench or in the reserves if things don’t work out immediately, and that will be hugely damaging for his long term career.
While I think he may have left a little early I still think that his career model has shown the Avispa hierarchy what they need to be doing to make Avispa Fukuoka work.
They took a young guy from University, hired a manager who is willing to give young players a chance and try to develop their talents, and after 3-4 seasons allow them to move onto clubs at a higher level in the league structure.
I have no idea what sort of deal has gone on between Avispa and Vissel for Ishizu to leave mid-season, I’m assuming to let one of our better players leave while we are on the edge of the play-offs to J1 it must have been a good deal for Avispa, and will hopefully see the money received be re-invested in making sure we get the next batch of top University players and High School players to try and get 5-6 more Ishizus.
The current model of getting over-paid, over-the-hill 33/34/35 year old J1 players who are basically coming to Avispa to retire is broken. The entire contract of Daisuke Ishizu at Avispa over the last 4 seasons is probably less than that which we have paid Makoto Tanaka, Norihisa Shimizu, or Masahiro Koga for just 1 season.