Wednesday 5 May 2021

Vs Nagoya Grampus (home) 5/5/21 - J League match 12

Kawasaki Frontale 3 - 2 Nagoya Grampus

Another game I couldn’t attend and another good result! And another blog post I should have written whilst I could still remember the game. Even though it has only been less than 24 hours it’s getting a bit vague already so I’ll have to go on my limited notes. As I’ve said numerous times, I find it quite hard to engage with our games when they are on TV or on DAZN. Certainly I enjoy them at the time but find it is quite easy to get distracted. Which is all basically me saying I’m very pleased and very lucky that I get to experience the majority of our games in the stadium in person. Hopefully we can get to a few more games once the state of emergency ends. Although the laxness of the state of emergency makes me think that it won’t change anything dramatically. Pretty sure I always say this too. So far this post is just repetition from previous posts. Let’s change that by starting to talk about the game.

Same team as last time. Same opponents. Uh oh, this change isn’t going so well. A little change on the bench with Hasegawa coming in for Kozuka. But when you consider quite how much they get to influence the game from a 10 minute cameo appearance, I guess it’s still business as usual. This time round Nagoya started a lot better, having a few chances and playing quite physically which didn’t allow us to settle. Pleasingly for us though, their bright start didn’t result in any goals for them. Quite how it didn’t result in any yellow cards for them I don’t know. They came into the game charged up and apparently full of aggro. I have no idea how Yoshida got away without a yellow card for an assault on one of our players (can’t remember who…). Actually I do know why. It seems almost impossible for a ref to book anyone in the first half of a game recently. After this initial flurry of fouling the game settled down into something of a stalemate with a few minor chances being traded but nothing too exciting happening. They sat back a bit more and we couldn’t get anything going. It looked like we might be heading for a 0-0, which to be honest wouldn’t have been too bad for us, and wouldn’t have been at all out of character for Nagoya. Thankfully, we were able to make the breakthrough from a lovely Jesiel header from a lovely Ao corner. For some reason Mateus spent a lot of the first half doing showboat passes. Guess he has to keep himself interested given that his job is mainly to run very quickly after hoofed long balls. Must get a bit boring, so he probably wants to break it up with some showing off and some diving from time to time.

The second half was a bit more exciting. And then a lot more tense. Just as I was writing a note to say that Yamane is once again staying back a bit more he popped up in the centre forward position to smash the ball in from a lovely Mitoma build up. Then we had a beauty of an own goal. An absolute clanger of a back pass from the Nagoya captain which had just enough power to evade Langerak and a chasing defender, but little enough power to make it all quite exciting. In these situations the time for the ball to trickle into the net is probably not much more than a second, but watching it, the time stretches beautifully for the benefactor team to enjoy the moment to the full. It was very unfortunate for them and I’d hate it to happen to us. But it was also very amusing for the ‘best defence in the league’ to make such a cock up. Can we now stop referring to Nagoya as having the best defence in the league and give that title to Sagan Tosu please? Unless they concede six in the game they have in hand, in which case, ok, Nagoya can have it. So we were cruising without ever really having got going. Oniki reacted to us going three up by replacing Ienaga and Damiao. Welcome back the wobble and almost welcome back the collapse. It’s been a while. Nagoya made a few changes themselves and then started to get back into the game. Their first was a decent finish from a bit of sloppy defending from us. Oniki responded with another sub. We conceded again, this time from a lovely free kick from Mr Angry Showboater himself Mateus who now really would have had something to show off about. Perhaps Sung-Ryong could have done better with it, but it was right in the top corner and went in off the post so I’m not going to get too upset about it. We hung on, just about. The last five minutes saw us mainly trying to keep the ball in the corner flag which isn’t a great look, but I think we’d been quite disrupted by our substitutions so maybe it was the right thing to do. Nagoya had more possession by far in the second half, 63% to our 37%. They only had two shots, but both went in. We only had one shot on target in the second half but thanks to the Nagoya defence, we scored twice. So it wasn’t really a high quality second half aside from a couple of the goals. But it was kind of exciting. Although in a way that I don’t want our games to be exciting. I would rather it was another 4-0. But I’ll definitely take two wins from these two fixtures. Lovely!

Now for some ‘analysis’. Five shots on target in the whole game. Five goals and one of them was an own goal! So basically one save in total for both teams. That’s now five saves Langerak has made in the last 4 games. All of these saves were in the previous game against us. He is widely held up to be the best keeper in the J League, and whilst this could be true, it certainly doesn’t show from the last four games. Perhaps when he has a wobble, Nagoya lose. Or perhaps other teams just don’t know how to make shooting opportunities against super defensive Nagoya. Hopefully they can take some tips from these two games. Actually, perhaps they’d better do that mainly from the first one. On Twitter people are bemoaning the fact that Nagoya’s defence is usually excellent but turns shit when they play us. It would be nice if they could be a bit more positive and perhaps give us some credit for making their defence look shit, but I quite understand that with every victory we probably make ourselves a little more unlikeable for rival fans. But when you consider we romped to victory against Nagoya last week but struggled against Hiroshima and Kashiwa it’s a bit confusing what’s going on this year. Normally you might say that teams lower in the table would be hoping and hanging on for a goalless draw against us. And teams higher up would be more confident and be a bit more open against us. But this doesn’t really work with Nagoya, who are not a team who are going to go for it very often. If you were going to pick the two draws out of our first 14 games you probably wouldn't have picked Vissel away and Sanfrecce at home. Weird! I still think we have an issue with substitutions. Oniki admitted he changed Ienaga and Damiao too early in his post match interview saying that it gave the wrong message that perhaps we thought the game was done at 3-0. To be honest though, it should have been done. It wasn’t the case in this game, but I’m not sure of the merits of make double subs in the same area of the pitch. I feel like it really rips the rhythm out of us. But then the changes in this match were in different areas of the pitch and look what happened! But it does seem like in most of our matches the subs have had a negative effect rather than a positive effect. I don’t have any answers though. So this is all a bit of a waste of time! Saying all this though, you can’t really complain how things are going this year. Until we have the inevitable shocking result and lose to a team who are playing terribly…

Next up Gamba away behind closed doors next Saturday. They are doing pretty badly this year but hopefully they won’t start playing well at the weekend. This is the first of five games against teams in the bottom seven of the league. Admittedly Gamba are a few games behind the rest of the teams, but perhaps it’s still a point worth making. Some teams would be really looking forward to a run like this, but I can’t help feel it’s five banana skins. Fingers crossed…. 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 HATATE 89')
DF 7. KURUMAYA Shintaro (on for NOBORIZATO 89')
MF 8. WAKIZAKA Yasuto (on for MITOMA 77')
MF 16. HASEGAWA Tatsuya
FW 19. TONO Daiya (on for IENAGA 63')
FW 20. CHINEN Kei (on for LEANDRO DAMIAO 63')


JESIEL (Frontale) 31' 1-0
YAMAME (Frontale) 50' 2-0
OWN GOAL (Nagoya) 59' 3-0
INAGAKI (Nagoya) 73' 3-1
MATEUS (Nagoya) 83' 3-2


No comments:

Post a Comment