Thursday, 11 March 2021

Vs Tokushima Vortis (home) 10/3/21 - J League match 3

Kawasaki Frontale 2 - 0 Tokushima Vortis

I normally say something about knocking these blog posts out due to lack of time and keeping things brief. Hopefully, I’ll manage to succeed in doing so this time. Two busy days between games means that I don’t have a lot of time to get this done. So here we go with some briefer than usual bullet points and without imaginative names this time. This is all totally half-arsed.

Line up -

Perhaps Oniki doesn’t like Shikoku and wanted to punish Tokushima but it was something of a shock when you consider that he put out his preferred eleven against Tokushima given the facts that the B team was out against Sendai and scored five and that we have Kashiwa Reysol at home on Saturday. Considering our lacklustre performance in this game, perhaps we should have stuck with the reserves. I’m still worried that we seem to oscillate between mass changes or no changes to the line-up without any apparent middle ground. I'm also concerned what might happen if Yamane were to get injured. Or Sung-Ryong. Players who would be stepping in would have pretty much no experience of playing for us. I could also moan about our subs being quite predictable ,(exactly the same in this game as the Cerezo game, albeit at different times), but I guess it’s not doing us any harm right now. However we have only scored one goal after making changes so it seems that regardless of whoever starts and whoever comes on, we are getting a similar drop in attacking threat after making subs. With the ACL being postponed till June/July, but still with very few details known about what might actually be happening with it, I’d say we have time to prepare a bit more for any misfortune we might encounter later on in the season. Not sure we will do so though.

Oppostion and game -

I was delighted to see Tokushima back in J1 as I’ve never been to their stadium. I was also delighted to see the away fixture is a bit later in the season so hopefully we’ll be able to travel by then. Please don’t let it get re-arranged to a horrible time.  They had drawn their first two games and looked like being a classic kind of banana skin team that we usually struggle against at home. I’m still nor sure if they are or not to be honest. We totally dominated most of the game but only managed six shots on target (one third of our total shots). The fact that they had none of target seems to suggest that we could have got away with not playing Sung-Ryong in this game and giving him a rest. There was an element of good fortune for us or generosity from Tokushima for both of our goals. But that’s not taking anything away from Damiao’s brilliant pressing and nice finishes for both goals and Mitoma’s quick thinking pass for the first. Is it just me, or is Damiao looking a lot more dangerous in a conventional striker kind of way this season? He’s seems quite on it at the moment, and long may that continue. Tokushima definitely seemed to be coming to try and snuff us out with a back four and what seemed like a back three directly in front of them. Clearly this didn’t help them going forward. I’m not sure it particularly worked in stopping us either. It was more just that we weren’t quite on it in this game I felt. I'd like to think that if we were up against it a bit more we might have gone up a gear, but to be honest, it's not like we weren't trying too hard. More like we just weren't really clicking aside from some occasional nice passages of play which more often than not led to nothing. Perhaps I should avoid provoking the irritation of opposition fans too much by moaning about performances when we’ve won four out of four, scoring twelve goals and conceding three. Or perhaps I should do the opposite and stoke that opposition fan ire whilst it is possible as I’m sure they’ll delight in it when we lose our first game.

VAR and ref -

Actually, I don’t think I have anything to write about VAR this week as I don’t think it was used. No complaints about the ref either. I will moan about that stupid late flagging thing again though. One linesman seemed to be doing it and the other wasn’t. It was pleasantly refreshing when the one who wasn’t raised his flag to stop an offside Tokushima attack. It was crushingly inevitable when we finally managed to get a second half shot on target that we’d get a late flag and it would be ruled out. Haven’t seen this decision replayed so no idea if it was right or not but will still get irritated that even when VAR isn’t involved directly we can still have the disappointment of a delayed deflating decision ruining a celebration.

Other bits -

Joao Schmidt is everywhere, and always available for a pass. I think he’s growing into his new role game by game. Very happy! Hatate seems to be getting better and better too. I’d still rather see him up front but can understand how exciting it is to have him and Mitoma on the same side attacking together. And he’s a total legend for being up for playing there. Ao seemed to volley a drop ball in the second half. (DAZN is playing up so I can’t check and see for sure).That was a bit weird. You don’t often see them having to be retaken. There were a lot of backheels in this game. If only our shooting had been as good as our backheeling. Oh, and finally, the run continues of someone getting a brace in every game. And perhaps the other run also continues of us having one dodgy half in every game. But maybe this time it wasn’t quite so dodgy, and also perhaps it was actually two halves that were a bit dodgy rather than one that was more dodgy.

As mentioned above, we have Kashiwa Reysol at home on Saturday at the slightly irritating time of 17:00. From a boozing point of view it really couldn’t be worse timed. Will it be team A or B that appears for us? (A, I reckon). Who will get the two goals? (Dunno, but I really hope it’s one of our players and they are in

the right net). How rubbish will we for one half of the game? (Hopefully not very rubbish and will be amazing for the other half). Go Frontale!


GK 1. Sung-Ryong JUNG 

DF 13. YAMANE Miki





FW 41. IENAGA Akihiro


FW 18. MITOMA Kaoru


GK 27. TANNO Kenta 

MF 3. TSUKAGAWA Koki (on for JOAO SCHMIDT 64')

DF 7. KURUMAYA Shintaro


MF 16. HASEGAWA Tatsuya (on for MITOMA 80')

FW 19. TONO Daiya (on for IENAGA 80')

MF 22. TACHIBANADA Kento (on for WAKIZAKA 64')

My Frontale Man Of The Match
Once again, I agree with the official verdict. It's got to go to...

LEANDRO DAMIAO - superb pressing creating both goals for himself with just a little help from a great Mitoma pass. Oh, and he tried another overhead kick,


LEANDRO DAMIAO (Frontale) 12' 1-0
LEANDRO DAMIAO (Frontale) 26' 2-0


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