Friday, March 6, 2009

J2 2009 preview: Roasso Kumamoto

Stadium: KKWing Stadium (32,000) and Kumamoto Suizenzi Stadium (15 000)
Average attendance 2008: 5,279
Last season's finish: 12th

2009 season's transfers:
GK Masaki Kinoshita (On loan from Gamba Osaka)
DF Kunihiro Yamashita (Drafted from Ryutsu Keizai University F.C.)
MF Nozomi Osako (Draft from Kagoshima Josei High School)
7 MF Yasunobu Matsuoka (Transferred from Gamba Osaka)
MF Toshiya Fujita (Transferred from Nagoya Grampus)
MF Toshiya Ishii (Transferred from Kyoto Sanga F.C.)
MF Hironori Nishi (Drafted from Ryutsu Keizai University F.C.)
9 FW Satoshi Nakayama (Transferred from Gamba Osaka)
FW Jun Uruno (Transferred from Ventforet Kofu)
FW William Yoshikawa (Drafted from Akatsuki High School)
FW Shotaro Ihata (Drafted from Shizuoka Sangyo University)


4 DF Yusuke Suzuki (Transferred to AC Nagano Parceiro)
9 FW Yoshio Kitagawa (Retired)
10 MF Kiyoshi Saito (Released)
11 FW Yutaka Takahashi (Transferred to Avispa Fukuoka)
13 FW Tamon Machida (Transferred to Sony Sendai F.C.)
14 DF Kenichi Kawano (Transferred to MIO Biwako Kusatsu)
17 MF Masahiko Kumagai (Released)
19 DF Kenichi Uemura (Retired)
20 MF Mitsuhiro Seki (Transferred to New Wave Kitakyushu)
23 DF Koji Arimura (Retired)
29 FW Yosuke Kobayashi (Transferred to Matsumoto Yamaga F.C.)
31 GK Yoichi Futori (Transferred to Gamba Osaka)
34 MF Kwon Seok-Geun (Released)
35 MF Oh Min-Seok (Released)
36 FW Park Sang-Tae (Released)

My view on the transfers:
The only big loss for Roasso in the transfermarket this year is FW Takahashi ,who have moved to Avispa. A revelation last season with all his goals, he was the by far best player for Roasso. Uruno, a fringe-player from Kofu, is the only replacement brought in,so they look weaker than before up front. In midfield veterans Fujita and Ishii makes nice additions, and will without a doubt be important members of the team this year.

Preferrable starting line-up:
4-4-2: Yoshida / Kobayashi - Yano, Ichimura, Cha, Kawabata / Fukuo - Komorida, Ishii, Fujita, Kina, Nakayama, Kijima

My view on the team:
Even without Takahashi, Roasso looks a better side this year, due to the two newcomers in midfield mainly. The defence isn't the best though,and they will probably concede alot of goals this year as well. Fujita and Ishii will propel the team forward and be good inspirators in tough times, while Nakayama and Kijima will probably be preferred up front.

Player to watch: Ji Ho Cha

Manager:Makoto Kitano
Formerly a youth and assistant coach of Kyoto Sanga, Kitano has been in charge of Roasso since 2007 with decent results under his belt. Not one that are likely to do wonders with Roasso though, but not the worst in the league.

Where they will finish:
Roasso's 2nd season in J2 will probably be a bit more enjoyable than the first, and they should be able to upset a few teams this season. They got a horrendous start to the 2008-campaign, but looked much stronger in the latter half of the season. If they can continue from that they should be able to finish reasonably high on the table. Somewhere around last year's 12th seems a good bet, as there are three new teams to compete against.


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