Tuesday 1 August 2017

Vs Jubilo Iwata (home) 29/7/17, J-League match 19

Kawasaki Frontale 2 - 5 Jubilo Iwata

Thankfully for me I wasn't able to go to this game. I was disappointed before, but when I saw the result it was actually a relief. Consequently, I'm not going to write much, as I only know the same as anyone who watched the game on TV, which I masochistically did on Sunday morning. I really hope that I’m not a lucky mascot for us as I’m missing the next few games due to being back in the UK for a holiday. I think in my last post I said that the mid season break was coming at exactly the wrong time for us and on Saturday we lost any momentum that we might have built up over the last few fixtures. Losing 5-2 at home is a stinker. I think the score didn’t really reflect the game particularly, but our optimism at the supporter’s event in relation to us taking the title now looks a little bit embarrassing. I’m not going to go through the whole game blow by blow as I don’t really want to think about it that much, but here are a few things that I thought whilst Jubilo scored goal after goal and we repeatedly lost the ball when we got to their box.

It seems that the main complaints and excuses from the fans after the game related to the conditions and the ref with a few moans about the players. Admittedly, the conditions were bad, but it’s something both teams had to deal with. And if the surface wasn’t good for our normal passing game we should have had some kind of plan B. I think this has been a problem for us all season to be honest. If our plan A doesn’t work (pass pass pass pass etc. and eventually score using pretty much the same starting eleven every week), we really start to wobble. Recently it seems that teams have worked us out a bit. Jubilo packed their defence. It seemed like they had five at the back with two defensive midfielders in front of them. For some reason we seemed determined to still try to pass the ball all the way to the net. With such a congested area it was obviously going to be difficult, but we still seemed unwilling to shoot from outside the box. With regards to complaints about the ref, of course he was useless, (as seems to be the case most weeks), but I don’t think we can really blame him. Some of his decisions were a bit bewildering and for periods of the second half he was giving a foul for every tackle made it seemed.  But I wouldn’t say his decisions caused us to concede any of the five goals we did. Jubilo came with a plan to disrupt us with some meaty tackles and quite often were leaving the boot in. I don’t like this kind of play but I understand why people do it against us, as it does seem to work quite often.

So, what was the reason we lost so badly? I think most of their goals were pretty soft. We weren’t defending very well and our attacks were getting broken up so easily by their packed defence, the ball then being pumped forward for a counter attack. We were asleep for their first, the second was bad marking, the third went right through Sung-Ryong’s legs, the fourth came from a dodgy back pass from Ienaga and then a bad clearance and the fifth was non-existent defending again. In the whole game they had only 32% possession and 11 shots, but managed to turn this into five goals. Either they are amazing (which probably isn’t the case) or we were at fault. In contrast we had loads of possession, twice as many shots but could only score twice. Admittedly we hit the post a lot in the last five minutes and on a few other occasions, and if one of the early ones had gone in, maybe it would have been a whole different game. When you add on the numerous attacks we had where we gave the ball away softly before shooting, it’s even more frustrating. It’s fair to say that we weren’t having a great game up front. Kobayashi and Abe were both having off days, Kengo wasn’t really with it and no-one can be said to have played particularly well. It speaks volumes that we looked most dangerous in the last ten minutes when Edu was also up front. We were just outnumbered up there for the majority of the game. I think the tactics really didn’t work. It wasn’t really Oniki’s day to be honest. His double substitution in response to their third was a bit strange with Moriya on for Neto and Ienaga on for Nobori and resulted in us conceding two more quick goals and Jubilo putting the game beyond our reach. I feel that Moriya and Ienaga were brought on mainly because they scored in the last game (the other later sub Morimoto also scored in that game!) but the only thing that game and this one had in common was the bad rain probably. Thespakusatsu Gunma and Jubilo are pretty different teams.

I probably don’t really need to restate the negatives and there weren’t really any positives to take from this game. The only one I can think of is that Morimoto scored again and if he could get into some kind of form he would give us something a little different up front as an option. But I think he’s some way off still. It’s a shame that we have a fit and eager Rhayner waiting on the sidelines but he can’t play as we already have three foreigners in the team. Not sure who would make way for him, but Elsinho didn’t have a great game and Neto has been getting subbed a bit recently. And Rhayner hasn’t always played fantastically when he has had his chances so who knows if he'd make a difference. I want to put this down as just a blip with too many players having an off day at the same time. I think tactically we got things wrong though. It also currently doesn’t feel very clever for us to have had a big party last weekend at the supporters event. I’m sure it didn’t have too much of an effect on the performances, but it just feels a little awkward when our next result is a 5-2 home defeat. And also, one last moan, but the DAZN coverage is just horrible, isn’t it? They seem averse to showing replays of anything you might want a replay of, instead showing endless shots of players walking back into position with the ball out of play. Thankfully, I very rarely have to watch DAZN as I’m normally at the matches, but the coverage feels like it is being put together by someone who has only recently become aware of the existence of the sport. I thought all this ranting would get things off my chest, but it has instead filled me with an impending sense of doom. Hopefully we can get back on the right track in the next game. We've got some big matches coming up very soon.

Next up is FC Tokyo at home on Saturday and then Albirex away next Wednesday. We’re playing a lot of games in August and I’m missing the next four so expect more posts like this, but hopefully a bit more positive! I can’t say it with too much conviction at the moment, but I’ll finish with a slightly half-hearted ‘Go Frontale!’ for the sake of tradition.


GK 1. Sung-Ryong JUNG
DF 18. ELSINHO (Yellow card 64')
DF 7. KURUMAYA Shintaro
MF 10. OSHIMA Ryota
FW 8. ABE Hiroyuki (Yellow card 60')

GK 30. ARAI Shota
DF 3. NARA Tatsuki
MF 6. TASAKA Yusuke
FW 9. MORIMOTO Takayuki (on for OSHIMA 75')
FW 16. HASEGAWA Tatsuya
MF 19. MORIYA Kentaro (on for NETO 58')
MF 41. IENAGA Akihiro (on for NOBORIZATO 58')

My Frontale Man Of The Match

I almost didn't bother mentioning this today, but I'm being optimistic and hoping that this is him continuing his road back to being a decent player.

MORIMOTO Takayuki - Not a great deal of competition for this award in this game. Pleased to see him score again and the fact that he was only on the pitch for 15 minutes means he can't be blamed for the rest of the horror show. Pretty confident finish for someone who is probably not that confident at the moment.

KAWABE (Jubilo) 8' 0-1
NETO (Frontale) 12' 1-1
SAKURAUCHI (Jubilo) 24' 1-2
KAWABE (Jubilo) 55' 1-3
ADAILTON (Jubilo) 59' 1-4
KAWAMATA (Jubilo) 61' 1-5
MORIMOTO (Frontale) 82' 2-5


The Frontale youtube channel usually has longer highlights provided by DAZN, but given that last year's highlights got wiped when the broadcaster got changed, I'm going to stick with the official J League ones. But you can watch the longer highlights here if you want.

No comments:

Post a Comment