Thursday, March 30, 2006

The Ameoba is growing!

Internet provider and shamrock look alike Cyberagent has switched from just sponsorship to ownership. It was announced in the Daily Yomiuri (Japan edition via Verdy Blog) that CA will buy 48.1 % of the team, becoming the number 2 shareholder behind Nippon TV.

So we can look forward to more Takagi blogs filled with pictures of nintendo games and his dog.

Morimoto Sighting!

Looks like the prodigal striker has returned! Morimoto took part in training for Verdy today after a 4 month layoff........according to the TV1969 official website, he had a fracture in his fifth metatarcle........that's why he's been among the missing since November.

It will probably be awhile before he's in game shape but he's alive!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Gametime 4-1: Kashiwa Reysol vs VERDY

The Yellow Juggernaut is upon us. Predictions were truly dour for the other team from Chiba entering the 2006 J2 campaign after the losses of Keiji Tamada, Yukio Tsuchiya, Yasuhiro Hato, Tomokazu Myojin and our own Harutaka Ono among others . Kashiwa Reysol has confounded those predictions and produced a cohesive unit who plays a vice-like defense and a multifaceted offense. No fewer than 4 players have notched 2 goals in the early campaign for the Sun Kings. Unlike Los Buitre, Kashiwa has produced a stable core by promoting from their strong youth programs. Everything starts from the back with good goalkeeping and a solid back 4. If Verdy expects to advance to J1 next year, this is one of the hurdles they will need to overcome.


Kashiwa Reysol




Kazunari OKAYAMA


Tatsuya YAZAWA




Tatsuya SUZUKI









Harutaka ONO

Hideki NAGAI




BENCH:Takagi, Saito, Iio, Ohashi, Kuba

*MY THOUGHTS: Kanazawa took his opportunity and grabbed it by the horns which makes me happy. I think Basilio gets his spot back in the starters position (though Saito is not at fault)....Kuba is still a couple good games away from the starting 11, Iio had a good training match and Ohashi is coming back from being banged up so I think you'll see him on the sidelines but probably not game action. It also looks like they were flirting with the 3-5-2 in training so they might switch it up during the game.......which just scares the hell out of me considering the "quality" or lack thereof between the pipes.

ONE TO WATCH: GK 1 Yuta Minami- It was very difficult to pick out one certain player on the team because everyone seems to contribute on this team. Minami is chosen because he has put up 4 clean sheets in a row. He almost had five but a last second score by Shonan ruined that. If Verdy can crack the brick wall early, they might be able to score alot but it seems highly unlikely.

WHEN AND WHERE: 2pm, April 1st at Tokyo Verdy's glorious Ajinomoto stadium

I will be in attendance and I'm buying Skyperfect so I'll be able to see every game from now on. Thanks to Aaron for shaming me into it!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Training match vs.FC Gifu

Tokai Division 1 squad FC Gifu came up to Ajinomoto to take on the sattlelites at 10:30 this morning and got beat details yet. I will post more when I find it out.

OK......I found more info.....the lineup according to one of the blogs was

FW Iio, Maatsura
MF Youth
MF Mihara.Youth,Ohashi,Tsurumaki
DF youth,Ono,youth
GK Kurokawa

Iio netted a PK goal and a free kick goal?

Maybe the official site will have more tonight

Monday, March 27, 2006

The newbies in green

Here is a picture (via the Tokyo Verdy official website) of the two newest additions to Team Buzzard. Killoran is on the left, Hiki is on the right. I don't know who is in the back.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Soilent Green Rankings- MARCH

The first month of J2 is in the books and two things are certain............Kashiwa is a strong, consistent squad and everyone else isn't. Saturday and sunday showed that up was down, left was right and Tokushima Vortis was a competent squad. are the rankings for J2 according to me.

1. KASHIWA REYSOL (1st place 4-1-0 13 pts 9GF 1GA +8)
Except for one mental lapse in game 1 against Shonan Bellmare, Kashiwa has been perfect. Balanced scoring and strong D. Hot like the sun!
Next up: Away Tokyo Verdy

2. SHONAN BELLMARE (5th place 2-1-1 7pts 4GF 4GA 0)
Shonan goes as far as Satoshi Yokoyama's foot will take bad game against Mito but the rest were strong.
Next up: Home Sagan

3. YOKOHAMA FC (4th place 2-2-1 8pts 3GF 2GA +1)
I imagine paint drying would be more fun to watch than an FC game at this point in time but they have strung together a 4 game unbeaten streak for former Verdian and Doha survivor Takaki.
Next up: Kazu Miura's Dance Party or Home Mito

4. TOKYO VERDY 1969 (2nd place 3-0-1 9pts 8GF 5GA +3)
Huge game coming up against white-hot Kashiwa. Midfield has been a problem but games against Vortis,Ehime, and Montedio have helped.
Next up: Home Kashiwa

5. TOKUSHIMA VORTIS (7th place 2-1-2 7pts 7GF 9GA -2)
Dropping former Verdy MF Jun Tamano seemed to do wonders because the team is winning and shutting people out after 2 rough starts.
Next up: Away Ehime

6. VISSEL KOBE (3rd place 3-0-2 9pts 8GF 7GA +1)
One word: ERRATIC! 3 wins are sandwiched between 2 awful blowout losses to Tokushima Vortis and Thespa Kusatsu. Baxter needs to get his guys to show up every day.
Next up:Home Vegalta

7. MITO HOLLYHOCK (6th place 2-1-2 7pts 5GF 6GA -1)
After a strong start, Mito is coming back to earth a bit...........Shonan was a big win but they follwed it up with a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Vissel.
Next up: Away Yokohama FC

8. VEGALTA SENDAI (8th place 2-0-2 7pts 7GF 3GA +4)
Beat the teams they should and lose to the ones they shouldn't...........that's the definition of mediocrity. They should pick it up a notch.
Next up: Away Vissel

9. EHIME FC (10th place 2-0-3 6pts 4GF 6GA -2)
They seem to play everybody tough, but lack of depth, experience, and talent up front keeps them from being truly successful. Strong Defense so far
Next up: Home Tokushima

10. MONTEDIO YAMAGATA (13th place 0-1-3 3GF 6GA -3)
I'm rating them this high because they've been snakebitten by bad luck and red cards. 2 games in a row they've had to play a man down and they kept the games close. Leandro's injury will be something to watch.
Next up: Away Thespa

11. CONSADOLE SAPPORO (9th place 2-0-3 6pts 3GF 4GA -1)
Can't buy a win at home. The HULK suspension has really been a setback for them as well. They haven't been awful but they're nowhere near being good right now.
Next up: Sweet sweet relief

12. SAGAN TOSU (11th place 1-1-3 4pts 3GF 7GA -4)
Bad team, bad colors, just bad..................I would have them lower, but..........
Next up: Away Shonan

13.THESPA KUSATSU (12th pace 1-0-3 3pts 4GF 8GA -4)
The big Vissel win was followed by squat. It looks like the Omiya reinforcements are starting to fade.
Next up: Home Montedio

On the rise: Tokushima Vortis
Falling like a rock:Mito Hollyhock

Saturday, March 25, 2006

An eyewitness account of the Montedio Muddle

Once again, entertaining poster and all-around good guy, Nick has an eyewitness account of yesterday's game.......without further ado:

nick has left a new comment on your post "100 with a bullet: Montedio Yamagata vs VERDY":

What a cracker!! Verdy in a can!! If someone wanted to sell the Verdy brand and what it means (apart from when they thrashed everyone at the start of the j league) they could do a lot worse than bottle todays game,stick it in a time capsule, dig it up in 500 years and they would still have 90 minutes of "Pure Verdy". After the durge that has been served up in the 3 out of the first 4 games in J2 (Bellmare game not withstanding even though we lost) todays game was an absolute treat!! Verdy were still tieing their boots up and checking their shinnies by the time Leandro had been granted permission to cut through the Verdy "defence" in the first minute.Nice goal if you are a Montedio fan, horror show if you bleed Green. A couple of neat passes a shimmy to bamboozle him and "The Cat" was picking the ball out the back of the net after a neat finish from Leandro.Oh dear!! Nevermind I thought, these lot are bottom of the league and shite, 89 minutes to go we`ll do `em. Well in the end we did but, Jesus what a way to do it!! After the goal we had some good possesion for about 10 minutes which culminated in the lively Saito spurning a great opportunity, through on the keeper to the left side of the box with a defender bearing down on him, keeper came out, he tried to flick it with the outside of his right boot to hit the bottom corner but went narrowly wide. After this, we absolutely fell to pieces.....Montedio were winning every 50/50 our game went long ball to nowhere,passing going nowhere. Montedio were absolutely dictating the game and looking like Brazil in comparison to 11 blokes who`d just met for a few beers, found some Green t shirts, saw a few lads in stripey tops on down the park and asked em for a kick about. Everybodys favourite Captain Ono was in sparkling form for the second goal. Verdy were on the touch line trying to push into the Montedio goal, forwards all waiting for a decent cross...The Boy Wonder is there..he feints one way...feints the other and......treads on the ball, falls over and the Montedeio defender can`t believe his luck!! He sprints clear with the ball from the edge of the 18 yard box knocks it up to Leandro who is still only on the half way line,Leandro then proceeds to beat 3 of the lamest "tackles" Ive ever seen and slots it past "The Cat" for number two! The Mighty Greens 2-0 down against bottom of the league!! At this point the wife heard the finer points of my tactical opinions, forcefully put and went to bed. Still,10 minutes to go before half time, if we could somehow get one back before the break, maybe we`d get back in the second half. This was a really open game with a good deal of chances at either end, unfortunately neither goalie was made to work much as most shots were either scuffed or ended up on the top of one of the beautiful looking mountains that the stadium is set in. Anyway, on a fast break from Verdy, somebody (dunno who) knocked a high ball over to the far post, Saito headed a pefect downward header into the path of Hiramoto who angled himself just right to avoid the oncoming defender and sidefoot the ball into the goal beyond the diving keeper. 2-1 we were back in it!! (unless we were as crap as we had been for the entire 45 minutes previously). Just before the break Saito (again) had another good opportunity, he had got himself into a great shooting position just inside the box and he seemed to snatch at it unfortunately and it went just over. Then came the second half...what a turnaround !! this is not to say by anymeans we dominated or hammered the opposition, but we certainly gave a good account of ourselves. Verdy probably got a right shoeing at half time and absolutely desrvedly so, luckily for us the main danger man Leandro got taken off with a leg injury after about 60 odd minutes and this seemed to affect the boys from Yamagata. Not long after, the Gods of football looked down on Kazuki Hiramoto and said "Yes My Child, you CAN have a penalty for that" Absolute 50/50 decision, from the TV angle anyway, if he didnt give a penalty I wouldnt have been angry,I certainly didnt leap up from my chair, fist clenched screaming F****in Penalty!!! and the commentater was DEFINATELY surprised at the decision.Long looping ball was crossed in from the touch line for Hiramoto to run on to which he did, and as he went to shoot there seemed to be a "collision" between him and one of the defenders. Result, Verdy penalty and Montedio down to 10 men for professional foul as Hiramoto was the last man. Anyway, as soon as the penalty was awarded. Ramos took off Saito (who looked value today even though he spurned a couple of good chances) and brought on Brasilio whose first touch was to VERY calmy slot the ball past the keeper. So, 2-2 and now the floodgates REALLY opened. For the last 20 minutes it was all Verdy pressure, Brasillio shooting high and wide TWICE to make me shout and curse and think about taking my boots along next time I can go, just in case, Nagai was also guilty of wasting a good opportunity when on the edge of the 6 yard box he decided to blast the ball across the face of goal insted of trying to pick someone out. To put this game into context, before the game I thought we`d win, bottom of the league and all that, after half an hour I was expecting a 4/5-0 defeat,we were that bad, by half time a draw would have been just about stomachable given the way the game had gone up to that point, but by now nothing less than a win was acceptable. Verdy were killing them but chance after chance was going begging, I thought it was gonna be a dissapointing draw.Or maybe worse if "The Cat" had anything to do with it. As i say it was all Verdy after the sending off but after a quick break Montedio knocked in (what looked like)an absolutely harmless ball in from the touchline, "The Cat" had no one and I mean NO ONE near him and he elected to punch the ball but in doing so only half connected with it and it bounced off the front of the post and out to safety, a VERY close call. The man is DODGY with a capital D.Finally, after a lot of messing about and near misses The Boys got what they (didnt really) deserve, The Great One Ramos had decided to take off a defender for the guy with the new worst haircut in the team, see if you can find him,it shouldnt be too hard... Anyway, he supplied a GREAT finish to a short pass at the edge of the box, low into the bottom left hand corner past the keeper. Cracking strike. Verdy had a couple more chances to make the game safe but they wouldnt be Verdy if they managed to do that so.. When the final whistle went there were hugs and cheers all over the pitch from our boys. Probably chinese burns and sleepless nights for the Yamagata boys,life is certainly tough at the bottom. Todays result is all important in the quest for a quick return to the top flight but more importantly (for me anyway) I was reminded of the sheer excitement watching a crap team can bring, I was bemoaning the quality of J2 before and I still think the same but entertainment wise, this was as good anything ive seen here or anywhere else.

My 3 stars today would have to be, Saito (unlucky to be taken off,reckon we`ll be seeing more of him), Hairdo Guy and Hiramoto (never stopped running). My 3 villains thrown into The Tosspot, Ono, shocking for the second goal and got booked for squaring up to an opposing defender in a position of no danger, Tosspot. The Cat for punching a ball that Steven Hawking could have caught against his own goalpost and nearly for one of the worst own goals you would ever have seen,Tosspot.Ramos for making me suffer 30 minutes of horror in the first half before he came to his senses,had a word and sorted it out.Job done, onwards and upwards The Boys.

100 with a bullet: Montedio Yamagata vs VERDY

Well, this is post 100 for Soilent Green 1969........hope it's a good one!

Coming off a nice little break, the Green machine hooked up with the striped lads from Yamagata. Currently sitting at the bottom of the J2 table, Montedio was starving for a win and it showed. Let's just say that at the beginning of the game, Montedio was playing the role of Carnie Wilson and Verdy was the donut.

Here are the lineups

Montedio Yamagata
GK 1 Shigeru Sakurai
DF 16 Kohei Usui 3 Leanardo 4 Shogo Kobara 17 Makoto Kimura
MF 6 Hayato Sasaki 8 Atsushi Nagai 18 Yuki Takabayashi 28 Nobuyuki Zaizen
FW 15 Ryoji Uehara 9 Leandro

SUBS: 5-Takumi Watanabe (59 min-Leandro), 7- Kenji Takahashi (68 min-Nagai), 11-Ryuta Hara (85 min-Sasaki)

GK 1 Mizuhara
DF 3 Fujita 5 Dedimar 4 Togawa 6 Sugawara
MF 22 Kina 11 Ono 8 Nagai 10 Anailson
FW 39 Saito 25 Hiramoto

SUBS-15-Shin Kanazawa (35 min-Kina), 9-Basilio (63 min-Saito), 32-Masatomo Kuba (74 min-Sugawara

Hate to say I told you I really don't............the Montedio "One to Watch", Leandro, struck very early in the game to give Montedio a 1-0 lead. I'm guessing that there was problems without Verdy's anchor in the back.........Hagimura has been arguably the most effective player in the back 4 this season. In a slightly ominous sign of things to come Anailson got carded in the 9th minute. This was a reversal of last weeks game against Ehime when absolutely nobody was carded.......not even Captain Hack himself, Harutaka Ono. in the 29th minute, Leandro put in the brace, putting Montedio in a seemingly insurmountable 2-0 lead.

Coming to the conclusion that there is a problem putting two beat-up midfielders in at the same time, Ramos pulled Kina for Shin Kanazawa.........yeah, I blew that call big time, didn't I? This seemed to give a spark to the squad because in the 38th minute, Hiramoto broke through with his first goal of the season. Dedimar was so excited that he went out and got a yellow card.

The second half started with a lackluster offense (according to Ramos on Js Goal via Babelfish). Montedio was hit with their first bit of misfortune when superstriker Leandro went down with a leg injury. A few minutes later, Montedio took a second blow when DF Kohei Usui got hit with a red card giving Verdy new life and continuing a trend of red cards for Montedio.

In a reversal of fortune, Ramos pulled one of last week's heros in Saito for the benched Basilio. Right on cue, the diminuitive Brazilian vet evened the score for Verdy. Also right on cue was another yellow for Verdy courtesy of Fujita.

With about 15 minutes to go, Ramos pulled DF Tomo Sugawara for a new addition to the varsity, Masatomo Kuba. Obviously, the gamble worked because Kuba put Verdy up for good at 3-2. Of course the game wouldn't be complete without Ono getting a yellow card, and he did just before the end of the game. I can sleep easy tonight.


Since, I didn't see the game, I'll give respect to all the goal scorers. Kuba, Basilio, Leandro (Yamagata), and Hiramoto all can call themselves stars!

FINAL THOUGHTS- Right now I'd give Ramos an A for his in game adjustments and a D+ for his game preparation. All the credit in the world goes to his substitution patterns........Kanazawa looks like he settled down the midfield and Basilio and Kuba scored almost instantly after coming off the bench. However, it looks like the team was overwhelmed out of the gate and I'm assuming that without the red card, Verdy doesn't score twice.

I think something else that's not helping matters is the lack of consistency and cohesion in the starting lineup. There were 3 new people in the starting lineup this week, just like last week. The week before saw 2 new people in the lineup. Injuries and inconsistency with the players are the big cause but it's also Ramos having an extremely quick trigger. Kina is probably out next week and Kanazawa will probably be back in.......Basilio will probably replace Saito, and maybe Kuba finds a place for someone in the midfield. I don't completely blame Ramos for this shuffling.......the midfield is a disaster. the main problem with continual change is that players don't know their roles, can't get comfortable with the lineups, and tend to have breakdowns at inopportune times.

Next week is the huge game of the season thus far when Verdy goes up against a very dangerous Kashiwa Reysol squad who is winning with young, homegrown talent. They have 13 points in 5 games and have let up one goal. I'm not optimistic.

Again if anyone watched the game.........write in and I'll give you the feature spot! I will be at Ajinomoto for the game next week and hope to have a comprehensive report.

HAPPY 100th post!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Verdy gets a bit younger

Verdy signed a couple of young international defenders yesterday. Eugene Killoran is a strapping young lad born in Ireland (picture above).......he's been playing with the youth team and had some looks in the pre-season. Another pickup is Brazilian Ricard Apericio Tavares or HIKI (not to be confused with the awful pop singer....Hiki Utada). Both players are 18 years of age...........which makes a nice change from the 30-something JFL retreads that tend to find our midfield.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Gametime 3-25:Montedio Yamagata vs VERDY

No photos again for some reason but goes. Montedio Yamagata is a team that finds itself in the utter depths of the second divison. The team has managed to notch only one goal in the three contests they've played this year. The defense has been fairly solid, led by Brazilian import Leanardo. One thing going against the blue stripes of Yamagata will be the absence of left back Toshihiko Uchiyama, who picked up 2 yellows early and gave Kazu Miura a gift Penalty Kick in the game against Yokohama FC. Even though the squad was a man down, they tightened up for over 54 minutes and held FC to only one goal. Tokyo Verdy comes in off a much needed bye. Some questions have popped up after last week's less than impressive win over newcomers Ehime FC. It remains to be seen whether the Grand Old Man, Hideki Nagai finds his way into the starting lineup over a suddenly ineffective Ohashi. Will Kanazawa be on the 15 man roster this week after seeing no time last week? Will Saito find his way into the starting 11? It remains to be seen!


Montedio Yamagata
GK 1 Shigeru Sakurai
DF 16 Kohei Usui 3 Leanardo 4 Shogo Kobara 17 Makoto Kimura
MF 6 Hayato Sasaki 8 Atsushi Nagai 18 Yuki Takabayashi 28 Nobuyuki Zaizen
FW 15 Ryoji Uehara 9 Leandro

GK 1 Mizuhara
DF 3 Fujita 2 Hagimura 4 Togawa 6 Sugawara
MF 5 Dedimar 11 Ono 8 Nagai 10 Anailson
FW 9 Basilio 25 Hiramoto

Bench: GK Takagi, MF Kina, Ohashi FW Saito DF Uemura

* I'm going with a rather unique lineup on this one........My sense is that Ramos will go with the hot hand in the midfield........Sugawara is a converted MF so why not use Dedimar as a D Mid? I think the forwards are gonna be on a short leash. I'm also predicting that Kanazawa is not with the team on the field.


FW 9. Leandro

Leandro made his debut last year for J1 upstart Omiya Ardija late last year after the defection of Brazilian striker Christian. It took a little while due to nerves and injuries, but in a game against Nagoya, Leandro notched his first J league goal. Small and fast, Leandro relies on quick, flashy moves to get to the goal. If Montedio wants to get out of it's scoring funk, it has to start with young Leandro.

2pm Saturday, March 25th in Yamagata..............I will not be able to watch but I'll try to piece together a report from news articles. I'll give you the space again Nick if you watch the game and care to comment.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


Been busy this week........I'll have a preview of the Yamagata game up tomorrow. Verdy fell to fifth in the standings after the games yesterday......Kashiwa is starting to put a little distance between themselves and the pack and Vissel has rattled off three straight.

How bad is Yokohama's offense? After being awarded a PK (King Kazu scored)and having a Yamagata player run off in the 35th minute, they were not able to increase a 1-0 lead even though they were a man up for 55 minutes.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Mikan Malaise

My first trip to historic Komazawa stadium to see Team Green play the Mighty Mikans of Ehime. Komazawa is a neat old stadium with the flat benches in the stands and the running track. It really reminded me of some the old stadiums I used to play ( football in for high school. Only 4,196 in attendance for the game today. I thought for sure Ehime would have more of a presence but it looked like they only had 40 or 50 ULTRAS in the supporter section. I couldn't get a picture of it but they did have cool cartoon renderings of each player on the team.

The other thing that stood out was the cool orange and blue uniforms with the blue and white racing stripes. I hope they keep the pattern for a long time.


Ehime FC

GK 1 Keisuke Hada
DF 15 . Ryota Moriwaki 5. Shingo Hoshino 7.Tomoya Kanamori 23. Hideto Inoue
MF 17. Kiyotaka Ishimaru 25. Yojiro Takahagi 27. Minoru Suganuma 8. Kazuhisa Hanaoka
FW 19. Yuya Nagatomi 33. Toshiya Tanaka

Subs 3 Kenichi Yagara (15 min-Ishimaru), 24 Yuki Tamura (60 min-Tanaka), 22 Hirokazu Otsubo (82 min-Nagatomi)


GK 1-Mizuhara
DF 3-Fujita, 2-Hagimura, 4-Togawa, 6-Sugawara
MF 22-Kina, 11-Ono, 7-Ohashi, 10-Anailson
FW 25-Hiramoto, 9-Basilio

Subs 8-Nagai (Halftime-Ohashi), 5-Dedimar (55 min-Hagimura), 39-Masaki Saito (65 min-Basilio)


Another new lineup for Yanagisawa (at all) and no Kanazawa (he was on the bench). Honestly, their play warranted the change. Kina is the only one with any energy to start. the first ten minutes of the match, Verdy controls play. They have most of the possesion but can't crack the disciplined back 4 of Ehime. At the 15th minute, Ehime has an unfortunate bit of bad luck when their anchor in the midfield, Kiyotaka Ishimaru, goes down with a leg injury. Ehime is forced to sub early in a position they were probably counting on being stable throughout the game. Ironically, Ehime picked up the pace and started fighting back, forcing some corners and having decent opportunities in the box.

The real problem with Ehime is they are built in a similar fashion to Yokohama FC, fairly decent in the back but possesing no real skill in the front. The forwards had a couple of good chances but weren't able to put anything away. Verdy's backline was more effective than in the past couple of games..........I think this could be a decent back 4 if Ramos lets them have some continuity. Kina is really helping settle things down as well. He had a good game defensively but his ball handling was sloppy and he held onto the ball too long. He was a vast improvement over the innefective Kanazawa.

The first half ends........reaaaaaaaaaaaaaly slow flow, lots of unforced errors. You can see the Ehime philosophy of boxing in and sending one guy on a breakaway from long passes. There's no real plan on offense but Verdy is falling into their game. I'm a little worried that Verdy is not really dictating any of the flow, better teams like Consadole and Kashiwa are going to pick them apart.

The second half begins, and an innefective Ohashi is pulled for the Grand Old Man of Verdy.......Hideki Nagai. Surprisingly, Nagai comes out with some fire and gets some possesions of the ball. He really made some things happen. At this time I'm sitting behind the bench, Kanazawa is just watching the game and Ramos yells at him to warm up. I would be a bit surprised to see him with the first team next week......I think he's gonna find himself lost in the mix. Hagimura goes down in minute 55 and the fabulous Dedimar comes charging in. Huzzah!
Big Dedi is taking most of the free kicks for Verdy.........they're nice kicks, good curves but they look more like shots and not really passes. He's also a bit rough in defense......Ehime goes after him and has a couple of nice chances.

Basilio is pulled in the 65th minute for Masaki Saito. I was hoping he would get a chance, and was very happy that it was him and not Iio on the bench today. Basilio (and Anailson for that matter) looked tired and couldn't get anything going at all. Basilio had a couple of soft shots but nothing special. I have to give Rui some credit, he called a nice game. Saito and Hiramoto are getting a bit frustrated out there......the mids are having a poor offensive game and killing every breakaway chance possible, especially Ono. I'm not sure what's going on with Ono or why he's the captain........he's been less than impressive, getting unnecessary cards and playing sloppy. Finally in the 80th minute, Saito gets the ball in a position he likes. Instead of attacking, he pulls the ball back, making the defender run past him. He puts a sweet cross in front of the goal to the wide open Nagai who zings it past Hada. 1-0 VERDY

The last ten minutes saw the Orangemen pick up the attack on the Buzzards. At one point Dedimar ran into Kina, allowing an Ehime attacker to streak by and take a shot that completely missed everything in the stadium. At times, this game resembled your average 3rd grade Y league soccer match.......with every kid making a pile around the ball. Mizuhara made a couple of nice saves after the D started to break apart.

Game over.......1-0 VERDY........back up to third behind Kashiwa and Mito (teams I picked to finish 8th and 10th respectively).


3. Hiroki Mizuhara- It's hard to judge him because the forwards were really subpar for Ehime, but Mizuhara cleaned up everything his way and didn't beat the team with a mistake........nice effort.

2. Nagai/Saito- Both subs gave a bit of energy to a lackluster squad. The goal was beautiful and made the game worth seeing. Well.....not really, but it was a nice goal!

1. Rui Ramos- He made the right calls all game......starting with Kina and Fujita for Yanagisawa and Kanazawa. Dedimar wasn't great but Nagai and Saito were. The team looks tired right and could've easily dropped the game after not being able to create much, but they didn't and that has to be partly because of the coach.


I think this team needs a break after 4 games in a 2 week span. they look sluggish. There also needs to be a little more continuity in the lineup. There were alot of communication breakdowns, especially in the midfield. Against a better squad, Verdy would have lost. I also think the team is relying on older members alot more. That's a little troubling because they're starting to show fatigue. It's gonna be nasty in August.


SIESTA! They have a BYE for the midweek match. The 25th will be a match in Yamagata against the 12th place Montedio Yamagata. I will not be able to watch but I'll try to piece together a report.


Not had it's moments, but today's Ehime FC/Verdy matchup was not enjoyable to watch........let me sleep on it and I'll write a big report Tomorrow. Anyhow, a couple of shocks around the league....Yokohama scores and Tokushima doesn't let up 4 goals. Everyone has at least one point in the league and Mito is in the top 3.

Here are the tables and results

Team Pts GP W D L GF GA GD
1 Kashiwa Reysol 7 3 2 1 0 6 1 +5
2 Mito Hollyhock 7 3 2 1 0 5 1 +4
3 Tokyo Verdy 1969 6 3 2 0 1 5 3 +2
4 Consadole Sapporo 6 3 2 0 1 2 1 +1
5 Vissel Kobe 6 3 2 0 1 4 4 +0
6 Shonan Bellmare 4 3 1 1 1 3 4 -1
7 Vegalta Sendai 3 2 1 1 0 4 1 +3
8 Thespa Kusatsu 3 2 1 1 0 3 4 -1
9 Ehime FC 3 3 1 0 2 1 2 -1
10 Yokohama FC 2 3 0 2 1 1 2 -1
11 Montedio Yamagata 1 2 0 1 1 1 2 -1
12 Sagan Tosu 1 3 0 1 2 1 4 -3
13 Tokushima Vortis 1 3 0 1 2 2 9 -7

VERDY 1-0 Ehime FC
Vegalta 0-1 Kashiwa
Montedio 0-1 Consaladole
Mito 3-0 Shonan
Vortis 1-1 Yokohama FC (Ah hah! They played eachother that's why Yokohama scored and Tokushima only let up 1 goal)
Sagan 1-3 Vissel

Friday, March 17, 2006

Sattelite league news

Allright, let me begin by saying I can't spell sattelite.....I've looked it up about a thousand times and I still forget.........sorry!

Anyhow, Tokyo Verdy is planning on joining up in a new "reserve" league with two college teams, Urawa, and Yokohama FC. Hmmm, Urawa,Verdy, and Yokohama FC in the same league......maybe they will be in training for press attention, You know, how to get on every magazine cover after you didn't do anything and "Intro to Hype".

With the forfeiture of Aram Malang and Tobaccco Monoploy from the ACL, this left alot of open time for the 25 members who don't get to play regularly. It's a good chance to get in a game situation against J league talent from time to time. Former Vegalta head man and Verdy mainstay Satoshi Tsunami will be in charge of the squad.

Also joining in the fun will be two squads from the college ranks......the fighting divers of Tsukuba University and Ryutsukeizai University, whose slogan is.................wait for it.........BETTER LUCK NEXT TIME! I can't make this stuff up .

I'm still guessing that they are able to shut out Yokohama FC.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Gametime 3/18 VERDY vs Ehime FC

It's another historic match for Verdy as they match up against the Mighty Mikan of Ehime FC in the first battle of their brief J2 careers. Two teams that are a contrast in styles on and off the pitch. Verdy was the first dynasty of Japan, a monolith of hype and ego who finally met their demise last season. Ehime on the other hand, is the dream team of J league upstart backed by the local community, government, and business who by sheer will claimed a spot in the second division. Ehime is 1-1 so far and has the opposite problem of the men in green. While Verdy has a strong frontline and weak defense and keeping, the men in orange have a brick wall in the back 4, a keeper who has impressed, and strikers who couldn't hit the side of a barn. Whoever can dictate the pace and flow of Saturday's game will probably come out ahead. Ehime also has a coaches head over their mantle........the recently terminated Yusuke Adachi of Yokohama KazuMiura FC. Both teams look to rebound from tough losses.......Verdy losing in a frustrating 2-0 loss to Bellmare, and Ehime dropping a 1-0 decision to Vissel Kobe.

Probable Starting Lineups

Ehime FC (4-4-2)

GK 1. Keisuke Hada
DF 15. Ryota Moriwaki 5. Shingo Hoshino 7.Tomoya Kanamori 23. Hideto Inoue
MF 17. Kiyotaka Ishimaru 25. Yojiro Takahagi 27. Minoru Suganuma 8. Kazuhisa Hanaoka
FW 19. Yuya Nagatomi 33. Toshiya Tanaka

VERDY 1969

GK 1. Mizuhara
DF 13. Yanagisawa 2. Hagimura 4. Togawa 6. Sugawara
MF 7. Ohashi 15. Kanazawa 11. Ono 10. Anailson
FW 9. Basilio 25 Hiramoto

Bench: Nagai,Dedimar,Takagi, Iio, Kina (I'd like to see Saito instead of Iio)


1. GK-Keisuke Hada.............Hada has been opening eyes with his stifling play between the pipes for Ehime FC. Hada face a barrage of shots against Vissel last week and only let one in......he also shut out Yokohama in the inaugural match (Who couldn't shut out Yokohama FC? ). Basilio and friends will have to crack him early in order to succeed..........We'll see if it's the birth of a superkeeper or the luck of the schedule.

Also look for FW Hironori Saruta (#14).........Saruta usually comes off the bench in the second half for offensive punch. He has the lone Ehime goal this season.

When and where: Saturday, March 18th 2pm Komazawa stadium

I will have an actual eyewitness report on Sunday

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Little brother is back in camp

Shinji Ono's little brother is back in camp. We reported back before Guam that Masa Ono (above........not to be confused with Masa Chono, below) was training with the green machine. It seems the training was cut short for the trip.

Ono has been trying to catch on in the J- league since 2002, when he came back from Germany as a young lad of 17. Ono has had trials with Urawa, Kobe, Albirex, and Shimizu.

If Ono is signed to the squad......he will be player number 408 and wear the pi sign as a, not really. He would be player number 40 and probably be assigned number 40.

It would be great for Verdy because they could put him on the cover of those crappy soccer mags with his brother.....WHO IS ALWAYS ON THE COVER! Kind of makes me long for the days of Hide Nakata worship.

Monday, March 13, 2006

El Golazo rankings

Here is a compilation of El Golazo rankings for game 1, the ACL and game 2.

Player Game 1 ACL Game 2 Total

Mizuhara 5.5 5.5 5.5 5.5

Yanagisawa 5.5 5.0 5.5 5.33
Togawa 5.5 6.5 5.5 5.83
Hagimura 6.0 5.5 5.0 5.5
Fujita 5.0 5.5 ---- 5.25
Sugawara ---- 6.0 5.5 5.75

Ohashi 6.5 ---- 5.5 6.0
Nagai 5.0 ---- 5.0 5.0
Anailson 6.0 6.0 5.5 5.83
Kanazawa 5.5 6.5 5.0 5.67
Ono 5.5 6.0 5.5 5.67
Hiroyama ---- 6.5 ---- 6.5

Basilio 6.5 6.0 5.5 6.0
Hiramoto 5.5 ----- 5.5 5.5
Saito ---- 6.0 ---- 6.0
Iio ---- 5.5 5.0 5.25

RAMOS 6.5 6.0 5.5 6.0

I only saw the first game so I can't argue too much, I think Anailson was ranked a bit low and Kanazawa a bit highbut I don't have a huge disagreement with the rankings.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

An eyewitness account of the Bell-ringing

From time to time, I like to take the comments out of the comments box and give them their due. Verdy fan and most frequent poster, Nick has some views on the Bellmare game.

Without further ado.........Nick

nick has left a new comment on your post "VERDY gets their bell rung": I watched both league games so far on TV and they have both made for dissappointing viewing. first up against Tokushima. A great result but a very poor performance. We had a grand total of one chance in the first half. To be fair the opposition were equally crap!! I spent most of the game wondering whether I could stomach a whole season of "schoolboy" football.Mistakes aplenty,simple passes gone astray,aimless punts upfield, the play seemed to be in slow motion for most of the game. 7,000 odd people in the Olympic Stadium DEPRESSING!! TV coverage constantly focused on Ramos (completely annoying) and "Ramos Verdy" GRRRRRRR!!!!! Anyway I think we used a lot of luck in that game, our few half chances hit the back of the net, theirs didnt. Still, top of the league after one game, can`t complain too much. This brings me to yesterdays game.First half we were looking good and had a good look about us, confident,assured and Bellmare didn`t have a shot on goal virtually until they scored. (Decent goal not really keepers fault), The goal did seem to bring Bellmare alive and start to pressure us a lot towards the break.When they went in 1-0 down at the break I still thought they`d be ok after a cup of tea at half time. Not to be though, a lively second half brought about a good deal of chances and attacking play from the Bellmare side of the field and litle by little less assured stuff from our boys. We had a few half chances but the forwards huffed and puffed a lot without making the keeper earn his money. The second goal was a well worked counter attack in injury time, the ball was in the Bellmare box, they broke clear had a two on two with the legendary Verdy back line...they finished it well, keeper had no chance. In summary, I`d say the second game was a far better game to watch,even though the end result wasn`t what was required. Its gonna be a LONG season.....have to say also, the weather looked great in Hiratsuka spring is here!! Summer evening footy, beer and the boys in Green. A great combination. The wife was shocked at Takagi being omitted from the line up, she has been to a few matches with us and noticed his barnet, when presented with no Afro keeper she wondered upon his whereabouts and was shocked to hear of him on the bench!! Not the same without Takagi to moan about!!

Well said, Nick!

I'd also like to thank the people from 22 countries for visiting Soilent Green......didn't know verdy had fans in Myanmar!

VERDY gets their bell rung

After coming off a tough and gutty loss to Korean superteam Ulsan Horang I in the opening game of ACL qualifiers, a slightly tired Verdy team headed east to Kanagawa to take on Shonan Bellmare in the home opener for the mermen. Bellmare was coming off a hard fought 1-1 tie with Verdy's fellow relegation victim Kashiwa Reysol.

The lineups

Shonan Bellmare

GK 1 Tomohiko Ito
DF 30 Kosuke Suda
DF 3 Yuzo Tamura
DF 2 Shinji Jojo
DF 21 Hiroyuki Omata
MF 5 Nivald
MF 7 Yusuke Sato
MF 10 Adiel (89 min 8-Sakamoto)
MF 24 Nozomu Kato (56 min 28-Nakamachi)
FW 11 Fabio (88 min 6- Tonoike)
FW 29 Satoshi Yokoyama

GK 1-Mizuhara
DF 13-Yanagisawa (82 min- 5-DEDIMAR OHMYGOD a Dedi sighting!)
DF 4-Togawa
DF 2-Hagimura
DF-6 Sugawara
MF 7-Ohashi (70 min 16-Iio)
MF 15-Kanazawa (70 min 8-Nagai)
MF 11-Ono
MF 10- Anailson
MF 9- Basilio
MF 25-Hiramoto

THE REPORT (Caution.......this is being taken from Verdy's website via babelfish so I'm feeling my way through this report. NOT an eyewitness account)

From what I gather by looking at the report, stats and other accounts, Verdy was the agressor early on. Verdy got it's first real chance at a score in the 8th minute, when Hiramoto got stoned by Bellmare's Ito on a shot in the 8th minute, Verdy would be continually frustrated by Ito the whole day. Most of the shots in today's game were taken by the duo of Ono and Ohashi, with nice support from the back 4 on passes and ball control. In about the 24th minute Nivald of Bellmare was given a yellow card. Two minutes later, an agressive Kanazawa saw yellow as well. Finally in the 32nd minute, Bellmare broke through on a cross from Sato to a breaking Yokoyama for a header off the post and in. Near the end of the half, Fabio tried to break for a goal but was stopped by Kobe refugee Sugawara to keep the game 1-0 at the half.

The second half saw an aggressive Verdy side go after Bellmare again. However Ito was up to the task and stopped everything that came his way. Verdy brought in Iio and Nagai for Kanazawa and Ohashi. From what I gleaned from Ramos interviews, it looked like the team completely went away from set plays and combinations and just kicked away, tking panicked shot after shot. Ono picked up his second yellow in as many games (possibly a new awful trend) and the team stopped functioning in a productive manner. Bellmare pulled it's three Brazilian imports late, believing the game was in hand. Surprisingly the scoring was not finished, Satoshi Yokoyama was fed a nice pass to get his brace and end the scoring in the 89th minute.

Final score 2-0 Bellmare


3. Tomo Sugawara-Nice stop near the end of the half to keep Verdy in the game. 2-0 and the team might have really imploded, ala 2005.

2. Satoshi Yokoyama (Shonan Bellmare)-2 goals on three shots is a nice way to introduce yourself to your new fans.

1. Tomohiko Ito (Shonan Bellmare)- Faced more shots than his opposite number(10-6) in goal and fought back every challenge. Quiet acquisition from Cerezo who is having a nice beginning in J2.

FINAL THOUGHTS: Just speculating here, but it looked like defense and the keeper killed us on this. I think there was some frustration in being stonewalled for the second game in a row and it showed with the (possible?) breakdown in the second half. If it's true, it stinks. I'm kind of tempted to lay this on Mizuhara after letting up 2 goals on only 6 shots, but I'm not sure what happened. I also think he might be tired after doing three games in 7 days.

I'm a little disappointed that I didn't get to see the birth of the Dedimar generation up close. Oh well........maybe some prime time next week against Ehime FC.

Coming up: Ehime FC (1 win 1 loss 0 ties)
Ehime lost today to Vissel Kobe 1-0.....this will be the first meeting between the clubs.

TIME DATE and PLACE 2:00pm March 18th at Komozawa stadium (Tokyo)

I got my ticket already so I'll see for myself!

Friday, March 10, 2006

J2 Table and Results

QUICK THOUGHTS: I don't know what to make of the league so early looks like it might be tight the rest of the way. Tokushima is only 2 games in and already the team is in trouble. Back to back blowouts is not a good thing. I also don't like seeing no cards in a game you're losing tells me they weren't being physical. Yokohama FC supporters decided to hold a cheer boycott because of the firing of it really a cheer boycott if there's nothing to cheer about? A 0-0 tie against Sagan blue versus pale pink......39 year old strikers waddling down the field.........Why no television for this game?

Junga Kono of Mito and Hulk of Consadole picked up red cards so neither will be playing next week.


Montedio Yamagata-----BYE

VERDY 0-2 Shonan Bellmare
Consadole Sapporo 0-1 Mito Hollyhock
Kashiwa Reysol 4-0 Thespa Kusatsu
Vissel Kobe 1-0 Ehime FC
Vegalta Sendai 4-0 Tokushima Vortis
Yokohama FC 0-0 Sagan Tosu


Team Games Points W T L GF GA DIF
Kashiwa Reysol 2 4 1 1 0 5 1 +4
Shonan Bellmare 2 4 1 1 0 3 1 +2
Mito Hollyhock 2 4 1 1 0 2 1 +1
Vegalta Sendai 1 3 1 0 0 4 0 +4
TOKYO VERDY 2 3 1 0 1 4 3 +1
Consadole Sapporo 2 3 1 0 1 1 1 0
Ehime FC 2 3 1 0 1 1 1 0
Thespa Kusatsu 2 3 1 0 1 3 4 -1
Vissel Kobe 2 3 1 0 1 1 3 -2
Montedio Yamagata 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 0
Sagan Tosu 2 1 0 1 1 0 1 -1
Yokohama FC 2 1 0 1 1 0 1 -1
Tokushima Vortis 2 0 0 0 2 1 8 -7

GAMETIME: 3/11 VERDY vs. Shonan Bellmare

BELLMARE PREVIEW: Verdy embarks on their first ever J2 roadtrip when they head south to take on Shonan Bellmare. Bellmare has been struggling the past couple of years, finishing near or at the bottom of the J2 table. The lads from Shonan hope to turn things around this year with the help of three Brazilians with J League experience (MF Nivald-Montedio 2003, MF Adiel-Urawa 2000, FW Fabio-Mito 2005). Bellmare started off their campaign with a 1-1 tie at newly relegated Kashiwa Reysol. Young Fabio managed to put one in the back of the net in the 86th minute to salvage a point for the aquamen. Bellmare hopes to make a statement against one of the prohibitive league favorites.

VERDY UPDATE: Verdy is coming off a gutsy 2-0 loss to Korean superteam Ulsan Horang-I. Most of the starting 11 played substantial minutes in the ACL contest, so fatigue might be a factor in the game. One player who should be rested though is the arguable man of the match from game 1, Masato Ohashi. Ohashi picked up a goal and a couple of assists in the 4-1 beating of Tokushima Vortis.


Shonan Bellmare (4-4-2)

GK Tomohiko Ito
DF Shinji Jojo
DF Hiroyuki Omata
DF Takahoshi Matsumoto
DF Kosuke Suda
MF Nivald
MF Yusuke Sato
MF Nozomu Kato
FW Fabio
FW Satoshi Yokoyama

VERDY (4-4-2)

GK Mizuhara
DF Yanagisawa
DF Hagimura
DF Togawa
DF Sugawara
MF Anailson
MF Ono
MF Kanazawa
MF Ohashi
FW Basilio
FW Hiramoto

BENCH: Nagai, Fujita, Takagi, Saito, Iio


11. Fabio-The young Brazilian striker scored late against Kashiwa to level the game and pull out a nice point on the road for Bellmare. With the erratic play of the D and Mizuhara, stopping Fabio from scoring might be a herculean effort.
7. Yusuke Sato-Sato is the enforcer for Bellmare in the middle of the field. A tough tackler and strong defensive presence, Sato will try and slow down Ohashi, Basilio, and Anailson from doing damage. Always an ejection possibility.
1. Tomohiko Ito-picked up from Cerezo Osaka in the offseason, Ito found himself in a busy game last week, preventing 13 of the 14 shots he faced from getting in the net. Finds himself in another tough test against a former J1 squad.

FINAL OUTLOOK- I think the key to this game is going to be the keepers. Mizuhara has been less than impressive in the 2 matches he's been between the pipes this season and has to be feeling the hot stinky breath of DANDELION TAKAGI on the back of his neck. Mental lapses in the back four have not helped either. This game could be rough for the Buzzards.


My good friend Matsu at Rising Sun News pointed out to me that the mystery striker who played for Kazuki Hiramoto in the ACL match against Ulsan Horang was actually Brazilian and Chinese league veteran Masaki Saito. El Golazo actually liked his performance against the Korean champs and I like the kids upside, so here's hoping we get to see a little more of him in the future.

Another couple of's been going around that Verdy used a second string squad for this game and that's not entirely accurate...........7 of the 11 starters in the Vortis game trotted out in the first 11 for Verdy on Wednesday. Those who sat included Hideki Nagai (who was pulled in the 45th minute of the J2 opener because of ineffective play and replaced by the much more effective Anailson.....who started), Taisei Fujita ( who struggled in the Vortis game and was replaced by the much speedier and presumptive starter Tomo Sugawara.), Kazuki Hiramoto (Who wasn't very effective in game 1 but a higher quality than Saito), and Masahiro Ohashi.

Of the 4 replacements, I'd say 2 were questionable and Ohashi probably would have made a difference with free kicks and his Basilio connection. I think Ramos used this match as a high speed training match. They represented the league well considering the inequality in talent between the two squads.

If I had to rate Ruy on coaching and management in his first week, I'd give him an 8 (out of 10)........he has kept his eye on the prize (promotion) and he didn't embarrass himself (coaching wise anyhow) on an international stage.

What was embarrassing was the attendance. 4,436 people came out for the match. Wednesday night football.......It's fantastic! It actually was better than the Gamba/Chonbuk match in Korea......only 2,700 turned up for that game.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Verdy suffers a torn ACL

Honestly, I'm reporting blind TV for the game and I don't have cable. I did find a site that had the Gamba ACL game on the net and they let one slip away. Anyhow let me give you the lineups and stats first-----

The Verdy site has 7 df for Ulsan so I'm only going to give the Verdy lineup for now


GK Mizuhara (Takagi is definetely number 2)
DF Yanagisawa
DF Togawa
DF Hagimura
DF Sugawara (MF?)
MF Ono
MF Kanazawa
MF Hiroyama
MF Anailson
FW Basilio
FW Ichiyanagi

GK Takagi
DF Fujita
DF Dedimar
DF Uemura
MF Ohashi
MF Nagai
MF Kina
FW Iio

First impressions.......I didn't understand the thinking here. I get not burning out the starters and resting key members but the ones he pulled are questionable. Basilio is pushing 35 and he's supposed to be a speed option. Ohashi on the other hand is 25, had a great game against Vortis and has ACL experience from his days in Yokohama. Why sit him? I'm also a little baffled with the keeper Takagi taking a turn on Saturday against Shonan? Is there a rotation?
It seems like Ramos couldn't make up his mind on whether or not to go for it.

The first half gave reason for hope as Verdy held Ulsan to a scoreless draw going into the locker room. Shots were even and Verdy had a slight edge on free kicks. They were getting tagged on the offsides calls and Kanazawa and Hagimura both got tagged for yellow cards.

Ulsan finally broke through with a score from Cho San Kyu in the 57th minute. 14 minutes later Leandro Machado put one in the net to finish the scoring at 2-0. Making brief appearances for the buzzards were Kazunori Iio, Nagai, and Fujita.

Final Thoughts.......Judging the quality of the opponent and the fact that Verdy hasn't really been together as a squad for very long, I'm not disappointed with the result. Judging from the stats, Verdy didn't embarass themselves out there and going far in the ACL might be worse than being eliminated early. Maybe they can catch Ulsan sleeping in Korea and pull off a huge upset so it's not over yet.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

J2 Around the League: Yokohama FC

In possibly the most disengenous press conference ever, Yusuke Adachi was given his walking papers by the good folks at Yokohama FC. In a first for the J League, Adachi was given a grand total of one game to prove that he could get the team to J1 this season. The Japan Times quoted team Vice President Hisao Sakamoto as saying that the 1-0 defeat to Newly promoted Ehime FC in no way influenced the decision to can Adachi. Yeah. Uh huh. Sure. Sakamoto did say that in its current state, Yokohama FC couldn't get promoted next year.

Here's a clue......when you have 39 year old strikers and other decrepit parts on your team, it's not the coach that's your real problem. You could hire Sir Alex Ferguson and your team wouldn't get promoted. It's the talent, Stupid!

Adachi is being replaced by a familiar face to Verdy fans. Former National team striker and Kazu running partner Takuya Takagi is taking over as head man. Takagi played for Verdy in 1998 and 1999 with Kazu, Nagai, and Ramos Rui.

Ulsan Lineup

Many thanks to SKY at the Bigsoccer forums for the possible Ulsan lineup tommorrow. Here it is.

Choi Sung-kuk ----------- Machado

Lee Chun-soo --- Park Byung-kyu --- Byun Sung-hwan --- Lee Jong-min

Vinicius -------- Park Dong-hyuk --- Yoo Kyoung-youl ---- Park Kyu-sun

Kim Ji-hyuk

Lee Ho(NT midfielder) won't be available due to injury.

Verdy is tougher to call............If they go with a regular team lineup, I'm guessing it will be

Basilio Hiramoto

Ohashi Ono Kanazawa Anailson

Yanagisawa Togawa Hagimura Fujita


If the articles about Ramos not making the ACL a priority then I'm guessing

Iio Kijima Saito,Morimoto

Hiroyama Kina Sugawara Maatsura Kuba, Sato

Aoba Togawa Dedimar Tomisawa Hayama, Shigemitsu

Takagi Kurokawa

If it's the second team, it will be a matchup of Korean National team members versus the JFL all star team.............That could be ugly.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Ratings and results of 2005 Verdy players (ElGolazo)

Here are some results and ratings of former Verdy players from last year (rankings from El Golazo.......I'll post the ranlings from Weekly Soccer Digest and Soccer Magazine report tomorrow)......I will say this, Early on it looks like the Saitama teams really got the best of the talent crop. Washington has 2 goals in 2 games and Daigo scored one goal and had a hand in two others just by the virtue of his free kicks.

Urawa Reds 1-1 tie Gamba

Washington 1 goal 6.5
Soma DNP

Ventforet Kofu 0-2 loss Shimizu S Pulse

Hayashi 6.0

Omiya Ardija 4-2 win

Kobayashi Daigo 1 goal 7.0 (El Golazo and game Man of the Match)
Kobayashi Yoshiyuki 6.0

Kawasaki Frontale 6-0 win Albirex Niigata

Machida not on 18 man roster
Yoneyama not on 18 man roster

Sanfrecce Hiroshima 3-4 loss Kashima Antlers

Toda 5.5

Yokohama F Marinos 4-1 win Kyoto Purple Sanga

Hirano DNP

Cerezo Osaka 2-3 loss Nagoya Grampus 8

Yamada (sub 71 min) 5.0

Tokushima Vortis 1-4 TOKYO VERDY 1969

Tamano 5.5

Final combined team record 3 wins 1 tie and 4 losses with 2 goals

Sunday, March 05, 2006


Wednesday night marks the "Home" of a Home and Home clash between Tokyo Verdy 1969 and the newly crowned Korean Super Cup champions Ulsan Hyundai Horang I. Ulsan qualified for the ACL by defeating Incheon United 6-3 on aggregate in a home and home playoff. Led by reigning K-League MVP Lee Chun Soo and K-league leading scorer Leandro Machado, Ulsan presents a formidable opponent for the newly reformed Tokyo Verdy.

The most comparable team to Ulsan is probably the Urawa Reds. Filled with National team members and backed by the deep pockets of a large automobile manufacturer (Ulsan-Hyundai, Urawa-Mitsubishi) the club has been known for having "Bridesmaid Syndrome", only claiming league titles in 1996 and 2005. It seems like their fortune is turning around after claiming the league cup in December. Ulsan has continued it's run of success by claiming the Korean Super Cup today in a closely contested 1-0 battle against Chonbuk Motors. Ulsan defender Jang Sang Won put in a header in the dying moments of the game to seal up the second trophy for Ulsan and claim the MVP honors for himself.

It was a bittersweet day for the Korean Champs as National Team captain and former Yokohama F Marinos/Kashiwa Reysol player Yoo Sang Chul decided to hang up his boots for good. Yoo rejected offers from Japan and Australia because his injuries stunted his game too much.

PROBABLE LINEUPS: HAHAHA! Your guess is as good as mine on this.

TIME AND PLACE: 7pm.....March 8th.......Tokyo National Stadium

Saturday, March 04, 2006

A Tale of Two halves

Day 1 of the Ramos regime is officially in the books and the end result was a highly satisfying 4-1 victory. The result however belies the fact that for the most part, it was a relatively hard fought and close match.

Let's start from the beginning, shall we? I was expecting a much bigger crowd when I got to historic National Stadium at around 1pm (kickoff was at 2) considering the article that said Verdy had pre-sold 15,000+ for the opening of the J2 campaign. Silly me for believing that spin (Truth be told, I believed the whole Maric to Omiya, and WMD's in Iraq, and that Britney Spears was a virgin stories that popped up in the past..........I just wanna believe). The actual attendance was a little over 7,500 people. I'm guessing people weren't happy about J2.

Starting lineups were announced with a few surprises........No Morimoto (school?), No Dedimar, and one Mr. Dandelion Takagi sitting on the bench instead of in between the pipes for team green. The rest of the lineup was the usual cast of characters, with Basilio and Hiramoto up front, Ohashi, Kanazawa,Ono, and Nagai in the middle, and Fujita, Hagimura, Togawa, and Yanagisawa in back.

Tokushima Vortis countered with a 4-5-1 with Torashi Shimazu in goal, Ryosuke Amo, Yohei Taniike, Kensaku Omori, and Yuki Fuji in the back 4. Former Verdian Jun Tamano led a 5 man midfield containing Koji Kataoka, Yuki Ishida, Yuya Hikichi, and Noriaki Tsutsui. Striker Toshiaki Haji was the lone striker up top.


From the beginning, Tokushima Vortis took it to the buzzards, controlling the midfield and pushing the ball into Verdy territory for much of the first half. the breakdowns were reminiscent of last years porous defensive backfield. Jun Tamano was a man possesed, going for the ball constantly and outrunning the Verdy midfield and D. He was especially hard on Nagai, making their battle into a personal vendetta. Maybe it was a case of nerves at the start, but the midfield was being badly outplayed by Vortis. Hiramoto showed some early flashes and Basilio, in a glimpse of things to come, weaved in and out of Vortis defenders with a skill and precision that is rarely seen in J1, much less J2. Unfortunately, they couldn't get any good touches.

Vortis had some early chances, but their problem was the lack of a finisher. Ishida had an isolation on the keeper, a perfect look at the net, and time and completely missed the target. Between him and Tsutsui, there were at least 4 good chances for goals that they just choked on. Finally, in the 23rd minute, Vortis Captain Kataoka took the ball on the far baseline and curved a tricky shot off of Mizuhara for a beautiful goal that just handcuffed the Verdy keeper. Nagai soon followed it up with the first yellow card of the match. Vortis really kept the pressure going until the 40th minute, when Jun Tamano got a breakaway, tripped in the box and was called for diving......from my angle, there was contact and feet were tangled. Tamano didn't really make a show out of it but still got the yellow card. I think a no call would've been fine in this instance but the ref decided otherwise. It seemed to take a little bit out of Tamano and Vortis soon started to crack a bit.

The start of stoppage time saw Verdy capitalise on a free kick from midfield. Shin Kanazawa, who was otherwise useless most of the day, put a beautiful free kick into a crowd of people in front of the Vortis net. The slightly more effective DF Hagimura, put his head on the ball and willed it in. Tie score, and Verdy is alive once again.


I don't know what Ramos said or did in the dressing room at halftime, but it seemed to put a fire under the squad. Out went Nagai, and in came Anailson, who doesn't look like an athlete at all..........he kind of reminded me of somebody's father when I was a kid. He's really small, but very fast. Anailson really got the tempo going in Verdy's favor. The big green were quickly taking back possesion and forcing the issue. About 9 minutes in to the second half, Anailson ran out on a breakaway and was taken down in the box by Taniike in a play that was pretty similar to the Tamano yellow card except for the outcome. PK! Basilio lined up and put it easily in the back of the net. 2-1 Verdy. Vortis starting picking up the physical play in a desperate attempt to pull even. Unfortunately for them, it backfired. Ohashi took the pass from Anailson just outside the box and was brought down by a couple of Vortis defenders. He was awarded a free kick which he put behind Shimazu for a 3-1 advantage. Verdy closed out the scoring a connection from Ohashi to Basilio for the fourth score for Ramos and company.

Final score 4-1

3. Masahiro Ohashi........After a non descript first half, he came on strong to help finish off Vortis in fine fashion.

2. Anailson.......The Diminutive import was the catalyst for turning things around in the second half. I believe he's effective in a 45 minute role. His size has me concerned for a 48 game season but man, he can bring it!

1. Basilio........He was impressive the whole game. He seemed to connect with Ohashi and Anailson. WOW! Great start, looks like the real deal.


I think it's going to take some time before we see what this team is really capable of. The early breakdown of the defense can be attributed to nerves, the second half was much better. The biggest concern has to be midfield. Kanazawa and Nagai were pathetic out there today. Ono wasn't much of a factor today. Ohashi came on in the second half and Anailson was brilliant. I'm not sure how long Rui will stick with seems like he got the quick hook today. I think he might be even less patient with Kanazawa.

Dedimar.........Where are you? I'm starting to get the feeling we won't see much of the man this season. I wouldn't be surprised to see another import by June or July.

Mizuhara wasn't dazzling out there but he was efficient. No major lapses but I am a little concerned about the constant punches instead of taking possesion. One time he's gonna punch it right into the head of an opposing striker for a goal.

Ulsan Horang-I is coming up next........I'll try to get a preview up soon........I don't really know anything about the team so it might not be too useful.

J2 Table and results 3-4-2006


TOKYO VERDY 1 0 0 3 4 1

Thespa Kusatsu 1 0 0 3 3 0

Ehime FC 1 0 0 3 1 0

Consadole Sapporo 1 0 0 3 1 0

Kashiwa Reysol 0 0 1 1 1 1

Mito Hollyhock 0 0 1 1 1 1

Montedio Yamagata 0 0 1 1 1 1

Shonan Bellmare 0 0 1 1 1 1

Vegalta Sendai - - - - - -

Sagan Tosu 0 1 0 0 0 1

Yokohama FC 0 1 0 0 0 1

Tokushima Vortis 0 1 0 0 1 4

Vissel Kobe 0 1 0 0 0 3


TOKYO VERDY 4 Tokushima Vortis 1
Ehime FC 1 Yokohama FC 0
Thespa Kusatsu 3 Vissel Kobe 0
Sagan Tosu 0 Consadole Sapporo 1
Kashiwa Reysol 1 Shonan Bellmare 1
Mito Hollyhock 1 Montedio Yamagata 1

Leading scorers

Basilio Tokyo Verdy 2
11 tied with 1

Leading Goals Against Average

Takuto Hayashi Consadole Sapporo 0.00
Takahiro Takagi Thespa Kusatsu 0.00
Keisuke Hada Ehime FC 0.00

Friday, March 03, 2006

More media

Here are some links for your viewing pleasure. Also Sports Hochi and Sanspo had articles saying Ramos had some super-duper double secret no girls allowed for authorized personnel only behind closed doors practices at the Verdy clubhouse in preparation for the opening match against Tokushima Vortis.

Anyhow here's the media

Daily Yomiuri (Straight English, no babel) has a preview of the Ramos era

JsGoal has a couple of interviews

Rui sporting some middle aged woman he trying to be CHER?

Captain Ono with some deep's got to be disconcerting having KIM JONG RUI's portrait everywhere you turn

TMinus 18 hours and counting

Thursday, March 02, 2006

GAMETIME 3/4 VERDY vs. Tokushima Vortis

March 4th begins the Ramos era and with it a new adventure in the netherworld known as J2. Verdy 1969 faces an unfamiliar foe in Tokushima Vortis (2005 12 wins 16 ties 16 losses) who finished a surprising 9th in it's inaugural season in the J League. Tokushima added some offensive punch up front with the addition of Tokyo Verdy midfielder Jun Tamano and Sanfrecce Hiroshima import Jorghino in hopes of narrowing a -26 goal differential. Vortis had a fairly successful preseason going 3-1-0 against J1 and J2 squads. The highlights of the preseason included wins over defending champ Gamba Osaka and J1 squad Oita Trinita.

Probable lineups: Tokushima Vortis (1-5-4)

FW Haji

MF Tamano

MF Kataoka MF Ishida

MF Tsutsui MF Akiba

DF Fuji DF Omori DF Taniike DF Kim WM

GK Shimazu

Key bench players: FW Jorghino, FW Kobayashi

Tokyo Verdy 1969 (4-4-2)

FW Hiramoto FW Basilio

MF Nagai MF Ohashi

MF Ono MF Kanazawa

DF Fujita DF Togawa DF Hagimura DF Yanagisawa

GK Takagi

Key bench players: MF Anailson, DF Dedimar, FW Morimoto

11. Koji Kataoka MF

Anchor of the Tokushima midfield (38 games 5 goals) 18. Toshiaki Haji
Leading scorer in 2005 (12 goals in 42 games)

32. Jun Tamano
Former Verdy Mid, lead attacker in Midfield

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

T-MINUS 72 hours and counting

Well, 3 days until the Ramos era officially begins. Already 15000 tickets have been sold for the season opener (myself included). Last year for the J1 campaign, Verdy only sold 14,100 and change for an average game, so the Ramos buzz is working. I'll have a game preview up tommorow.

Speaking of looks like the petals are completely off the is a collection of the many faces of Takagi, plus a glimpse of the Ramos poster in the back.