Saturday, February 28, 2009

Tsuyoshi goes to America!

Well Tsuyoshi Yoshitake fans.......if you are wondering where the fleet footed lefty has been hiding, wonder no more. Andrew Miller's Battery Shots blog has a list of players invited in to the USL 1 Charleston Battery training camp
If you are not familiar with the USL, it is the equivalent of J2 but with a bit of a twist. The USL has no real relationship with the MLS (unless you want to say animosity is a connection). A familiar face to Verdy fans is Takashi Hirano, who plies his trade at defending USL champs Vancouver. Good luck!
You might have already known this but Verdy played RKU in a training match and tied 1-1. Masashi Oguro scored the lone goal for Verdy in the second stanza. RKU came back and tied it 5 minutes later.
There is a friendly scheduled at 11 between Verdy and Hokushinetsuupercalafragilisticexpialidocis league squad Matsumoto Yamaga FC from Nagano at the luxurious Verdy grounds. If anyoe decides to go, write somethin up and I will post it.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Song of the day
early REM, like early Verdy was the best

Ken Matsushima has a more in-depth preview at RSN which is a pretty good read
Here it is
The only thing I don't like about it is the 4th-6th place qualifiers......stop being such a sissy, pick it and stick with it.

Anyhow considering I have not really seen much of any of these teams and don't really know what the hell I'm talking is my expert opinion.

1. Cerezo Osaka- I'm not drinking the Culpi kool-aid here.....I think he gets canned after a slow start. I think they bring in someone who is able to get the young guys going past the also ran threshhold.

2. Consadole Sapporo- I am however drinking the Ishizaki kool-aid. He's a J League manager and if Verdy let him do the job in 2005, they would never have played in J2. Kashiwa will regret the move.

3. Ventforet Kofu- I thought they were coming around. They were the only one last year to stare down Hiroshima without blinking. AND they added Miracle Mo to that is nice!

4. Vegalta Sendai-Summer is warm, water is wet, and Vegalta is the last team to be eliminated from the J1 promotion. I think they need a good shaman or something.....I don't get it.

5. TOKYO VERDY- Not so much cause they are good but more so cause the rest of the league is fairly soft. Three or Four of the bigger names won't be with the team by the end. Which is good because I think the younguns are gonna get some shots to show that they are players. So it's gonna be a good thing. Seriously.

6. Shonan Bellmare- They have one of the older teams in the league and they opt for a U-23 manager. NIIIIIIICE! And Tuto? Really? F$$$ing TUTO? You deserve to stay in J2.

7. Avispa Fukuoka-Best team in Kyuushu playing in J2. The best team in Kyuushu period is New Wave Kitakyuushu, followed by the LA GALAXY.

8. Thespa Kusatsu- Did you know that the active J2 goalscoring leader of all-time plays for Kusatsu (Yasunori Takada with 70). freaky, huh? Nozomi Hiroyama is gonna tear J2 a new one.

9. Sagan Tosu- 5. That's the number of goals scored by Koji Hirose. He happens to be the top returning scorer for Tosu. Shimada was a nice pickup. And Takuya Yamada-EXOTIC TERMINATER CLAD IN SOFT PASTEL COLORS REMINISCENT OF AN EASTER PAGEANT joins up as well.

10. Yokohama FC- Look for them to start fast and then peter out like every other Higuchi team that ever played the beautiful game. At least the uniforms are better.

11. Mito Hollyhock- They play hard every game......which is something you can't say about at least 20 other teams in Japan.

GOD THIS IS TIRING........WHO CARES AFTER 11..........ok, let's continue. I can't even name the last 6.

12. Kattaler Toyama-Sure.
13. FC Gifu-OK
14. Roasso Kumamoto- Screw you Tetsu Kina.
15. Ehime FC-It seems like they get worse every year. The cartoons are nice though.
16. Tochigi SC- Allright, I saw them today and they looked awful. Really bad. No defense and not much of an attack to speak of. They have alot of big names but they ain't good.
17. Fagiano Okayama- Go Kosuke!
18. Tokushima Vortis-consistenly bad!

Top 5 scorers
1. Shinji Kagawa-Cerezo
2. Maranhao-Ventforet Kofu
3. Tomoyuki Arata- Mito
4. Tetsuya Okubo-Avispa Fukuoka
5. Leonard-VERDY

Best manager- Ishizaki
Best keeper- Shinji Muro Sagan Tosu
First manager fired- Naohiko Minobe Tokushima Vortis
Kazu goal total-1
Leandro goal total-0

Oguro goes to.........Vissel Kobe on a loan in July.


Thursday, February 19, 2009


4 games in the preseason hopper!

Verdy ties Thespa 3-3
Drops one to Reysol 1-0
Wins 2-1 over Yokohama on a Leonardo brace
and ties FC Gifu 1-1 on a Hiramoto goal

Sat League announced

Verdy gets placed in a 5 team pool with last years sat league playmates Omiya and Vegalta as well as Kashiwa Reysol and Consadole Sapporo

Soooooooo......if you like Yuzo Funakoshi, March 8th in Kashiwa is your first chance to watch him lumber up and down the pitch.

Finally, Nick reminded me of a band I liked but a song I didn't

this is the song of the day

Finally......The player guides are out!!!!!!!

WSM is a bit disappointing.....Soccer Digest better have a better one!

This one is better

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Welcome to the Neighborhood!

Song of the day

Somebody likes the Doors a bit too much!

First off, Verdy played FC Machida Zelvia in a trainer today and won 2-1 off of a brace by Leonard. Camp starts monday and they have a full slate with games against Thespa, Kashiwa, and Yokohama FC just to name a few.

We start off Soilent Green's barely trying preview of J2 with a visit to the 3 new kids on the block.

Kataller Toyama

Toyama was founded just two years ago, merging regional powerhouse clubs YKK AP and ALO's Hokuriku into one Toyama superclub. One year later, Kataller would find themselves promoted into J2 on the strength of a 3rd place finish. Unlike it's other promoted brethren, Toyama will stick with the core of the club that got them to J2.

The offense is led by the combination of striker Mitsuru Hasegawa and Hideyuki Ishida, who combined last year for 27 goals. Makoto Watanabe anchors the midfield.

A familiar face joins Kataller in defense with the addition of former Verdy defender Sho Asuke.

Not a lot of talent on this squad but it shouldn't matter in year 1.


Okayama has alot of similarities to their Toyama cohorts. They both entered JFL in 2007 and gained promotion to J2 in 2008. Okayama finished 4th, just grabbing the last promotion spot. Unlike Kataller, Okayama is not sitting still, bringing in 19 players with various levels of experience in the J2 game.

Fagiano will hope to put alot of goals in the net with a proloific trio of former Verdy man Kohei Kiyama (18 goals), Yasutaka Kobayashi (19 goals), and new signee Kohei Nishino (8 goals at Mito). You might remember Yuhei Ono and Naoki Mihara from their days on the Verdy practice fields.


Tochigi looks to be the strongest of the three debutants with a group of players on paper that boast a plethora of J league experience. The big signing was former Verdy DF Atsushi Yoneyama who looks to partner with another Verdy alum in captain Yusuke Sato in order to lock down the midfield. Manabu Wakabayashi comes home from Ehime to try and regain the touch that helped him lead the JFL in goals scored in 2005 before he was grabbed up by Omiya. Another Verdy OB is in between the pipes for Tochigi when dreadlocked shotstopper Kiyomitsu Kobari gets the nod.

Don't be too surprised if Tochigi is up near the top of the leader board midway through the season. they have a team of vets who have been through the wars before.

Friday, February 06, 2009


Song of the night

I'll give you a more in-depth one later.

You asked so you shall recieve

The first game is away at Tokushima
The first home game is versus pre-season favorite Cerezo Osaka

the last game is at home versus Consadole Sapporo.

And yes Vendo, in June Verdy has their blowout loss at Kokuritsu to Mito.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Meet your Verdy players 2009-Mids and Forwards

Song of the day

Rumor in the dirtsheets is that Verdy will go 4-3-3 this year. I'm not sure yet how I feel about that.

Meet the Mids

5. Takahiro Kawamura- It seems like every year, Verdy has to fill it's Jubilo fetish with a member from the Championship teams of the early 2000's and Kawamura fits the bill. The 29 year old central mid comes in after traveling around with Cerezo, Kawasaki, and last year's version of Jubilo in order to fill in the spot left by the "talented" Takashi Fukunishi. Seems a little more like Harutaka Ono.

6. Tomo Sugawara- The gritty little product of the old Yomiuri youth system comes back for his 4th year manning the center of the field for Verdy. A tenacious defender, Sugawara makes up for lack of size and skill with speed and hustle. Unfortunately, Sugawara has been known to pick up small dings throughout the year that keep him out for one or two games at a time. Sugawara is one of a handful of Yomiuri Verdy guys to spend time in Brazil.

7. Hiroki Kawano- The future. Kawano came in as a speedy little wing from the Verdy youth system and scored 2 goals in limited minutes. Kawano was part of the U-20 squads that ventured to the Middle East in 2008-2009 to try and qualify for the U-20 World Cup. His most memorable quote was during one of his U-20 trips when he said something to the effect of, "I don't want to play Mito next year!" Verdy will play Mito 3 times in 2009.

8. Kosei Shibasaki- Versatile midfielder can play either in the center or on the wing. Last year was his first as a regular starter and full-time contributor after coming from Kokushikaan University. Not a great scorer, more of a disruptor in the midfield.

15. Kunihiko Takizawa- Takizawa is another member of Takagi's old Yokohama FC folly to join Verdy. A major contributor over the past 3 years to the Fulie, Takizawa made his mark as a member of Grampus is the early 2000's. Takizawa specializes as a left wing so expect him to challenge and provide depth on the left side of the field.

18. Genki Nagasato- After 3 years of prime time play for Shonan Bellmare, Nagasato inexplicably fell out of favor with the brass at the Kanagawa club and found himself out of a job starting the 2009 campaign. Nagasato is young and versatile. He can play all 6 offensive positions in the lineup. His problem is consistently finding the back of the net.

23. Masato Fujita- Highly touted project out of Meiji University. The MF/DF is said to play in the mold of Yukio Tsuchiya so he's come to the right place.

28. Kento Tsurumaki- Returns after a dissapointing stint at Mito Hollyhock. Tsurumaki looks to add depth on the wing and fill out the practice squad.

30. Yu Tomidokoro- Tomidokoro really started getting noticed after notching late goals in 2 straight Sahara Cup knockout games to help his team advance to a semifinal berth. Tomidokoro will probably learn from the sides early on, but Verdy brass are hoping that he can partner up with Kawano to lay the foundation for the next great Verdy squad.

31. Junpei Shinmura- Another Verdy youth product to not see much time on the field. Shinmura goes into camp as the number 1 backup in central midfield so we might get to see if he actually has some game or not.

Meet the Forwards

9. Masashi Oguro- The former J League scoring king and National Team player came back to Japan from a disappointing stint at Torino in Italy. Flush with cash and unrealistic expectations, Oguro was slated to fill in at Hulk's spot of playmaker. Unfortunately for him and the team, Oguro works best when he is A. in shape and B. playing with a creative partner up top. He had neither. Oguro was only able to manage two goals in 2008. Oguro will try to resuscitate his career in J2 as the main target man and possibly get noticed by a J1 squad desperate for scoring help.

10. Leandro-Last year's big offseason flop comes back for another year of competition with Verdy prodigy Kawano for the wing position. Managed to aid Hulk in disrupting team chemistry by showing up late from spring vacation without team permission. Had a couple bright moments and a few nice goals but mostly put in lethargic performances on the wing. Only one of two foreign players on the roster this year.

11. Leonard- Mystery man for Verdy who came in from the prestigious Aomori Yamada program and was immediately shipped off to Sagan Tosu for 2 years. Displayed up and performances and fell in and out of the starting 11 for the southern club. Can play as a target forward or on the wing.

13. Taira Inoue- Speedy striker has yet to find the back of the net in 2 seasons as a Verdy player. Kind of fell out favor with the constant upheval in the front. Very slight build and can get knocked off the ball in a crowd.

16. Kazunori Iio- Iio is one of those players who you have to marvel at. Not possessing either great speed or size. Iio always seems to be a guy who coaches really like to have on their squad. Iio comes into camp as the backup for the top and wing positions.

19. Yuzo Funakoshi- The big donkey comes back for one more stink with pockets a bit lighter after taking a pay cut. Funakoshi had the dubious distinction of only appearing in losing games for Verdy in 2008. Possibly his finest moment was scoring the goal that helped Verdy gain promotion in 2007. Funakoshi is the tallest player in the J league at 194 centimeters.

25. Kazuki Hiramoto- Hiramoto currently boasts the longest stint as a Verdy player, starting his 11th campaign. Last year was a disaster for the mercurial forward, coming into camp grossly overweight and putting in less than stellar performances. Hiramoto has on occasion put in great displays of ball skills and determination for goals in the past, so it is a mystery why he can't do that on a more regular basis. Another bad season could doom his career as a Verdy player.

27. Ryohei Hayashi- Hayashi comes out of the Verdy youth and Meiji University sytem to challenge for a spot as the main target man. Hayashi was recognized as a University best 11 member in 2007.

Meet your Verdy players 2009-Goalies and Defenders

Song of the day Adieu Lux Interior......Rest in Peace!

First off.........Osama El Samni heads to FK Teplice in Czechoslovakia. In 2 years he couldn't crack the starting lineup.......that might have had something to do with Hashiratani and Takagi being player gatekeepers. Anyhow, the Egyptian-Japanese striker has a chance to make his mark in Europe......good luck!

Meet the Keepers

1. Yoichi Doi- The 35 year old keeper comes back to Verdy for a cut rate price after shockingly being told that his services were no longer necessary just days before the final game of the season. The former FC Tokyo stalwart and National Team keeper has lost a step but can conjure up classic performances between the pipes. With the athleticism gone, Doi now relies on good instincts and precise distribution to succeed. After 14 years of J1 play for Kashiwa, FC Tokyo, and Verdy, this will be Doi's first stint in J2. (2nd year with Verdy)

21. Yoshinari Takagi- The longest tenured consecutive Verdy player, Takagi comes into 2009 as a backup to Doi yet again. After 5 years of starting, Takagi found himself watching, only appearing in 3 cup games in 2008. Takagi has always had the talent and physical skills to be a decent J1 keeper but his iffy decision making and lapses in judgement at crucial times leaves coaches leery of completely putting their faith in the big man. (10th year with Verdy)

26. Takahiro Shibasaki- The first man in the net........if you have a training match with Arte Takasaki. Shibasaki starts year 9 as a professional keeper. He has appeared in 3 league matches and 1 cup game in stints with Verdy, Yokohama, and FC Tokyo. With 51 games this year, he might see a match or two.

34. Tomoyuki Suzuki- Suzuki starts his second year as the 4th keeper for Verdy and the presumed keeper of the future. Last year he apprenticed under the professional Doi.

Meet the Defenders

2. Kensuke Fukuda- The pressure is on young Fukuda in year 3 to show he can be a full-time side back. Fukuda has good speed and a nice cross but often misses on defensive assignments and can be overpowered in one on one situtations. Fukuda was unable to unseat (current JEF defender) Takumi Wada from the starting lineup in 2008. Now with the right side vacant, Fukuda heads into camp as the frontrunner for the job.

4. Masaki Iida- The big defender starts year 3 of his Verdy adventure. Wada saw some time in the lineup last year after toiling as a practice sqaud player in 2007. Iida is a good physical presence and will challenge for the starting spot at center back.

14. Seitaro Tomisawa- Tomisawa starts his 8th year with Verdy and is known for doing everything.......poorly. Tomisawa is a big, physical player who can play central defense, midfield, or side back and has the infuriating habit of following a good play with an awful decision. He probably will get the nod in Daisuke Nasu's spot at centerback.

17. Yukio Tsuchiya- Tsuchiya is a man who plays far bigger than his size. Tsuchiya had one of the few great years for Verdy but the wear and tear of the season seemed to slow him near the end. An unfortunate incident with Tatsuya Tanaka while at Kashiwa made him public enemy #1 with the Urawa crowd and drove him from Omiya to anchor Verdy. Tsuchiya will be 35 in July so it will be seen if he can keep up his physical, athletic style for much longer.

20. Kazuya Iwakura- Iwakura rejoins his former manager at Yokohama FC after a one year stint at New Wave KitaKyushu. Iwakura was brought in to compete with Fukuda at the right back position and provide some depth for the squad.

22. Toshihiro Hattori- Hattori comes back to captain the squad after a painful and well detailed break from the team a week before the end of the 2008 season. The longtime Jubilo and National team wing lines up on the left for the third year in a row after taking a huge paycut. Hattori will hit 36 this year, which is old but not uncommon for J2 defenders. Seemed to lose a step last year and relied more on physical play and theatrics when he was beaten. Good locker room presence.

24. Masahiro Nasukawa- Nasukawa's main job this year is to learn everything he can from Hattori and be ready to fill in on the left if he has to. Nasukawa is a highly rated prospect from the Aomori Yamada program and Chukyo University.

29. Takumi Wada- Wada was a starting member of the Verdy youth system that made two semi-final and one quarterfinal appearances in the three major club youth competitions in 2008. Wada is a speedy right back who should see most of his time in practice matches and training.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Numbers Game

Song of the day

Influenza!!!! I'm sick!

Verdy puts up the numbers for each player this year. Before you check them out though, read this from the brilliant writer of 3rd Degree, Buzz Carrick. It has nothing to do with Verdy per se, but it outlines the importance of numbers in ways I never could

Allright here are the numbers

1. Yoichi Doi
2. Kensuke Fukuda
4. Masaaki Iida
5. Takahiro Kawamura
6. Tomo Sugawara
7. Hiroki Kawano
8. Kohei Shibasaki
9. Masashi Oguro
10. Leandro
11. Leonardo
13. Taira Inoue
14. Seitaro Tomisawa
15. Kunihiko Takizawa
16. Kasunori Iio
17. Yukio Tsuchiya
18. Genki Nagasato
19. Yuzo Funakoshi
20. Kazuya Iwakura
21. Yoshinari Takagi
22. Toshihiro Hattori (CAP)
23. Masato Fujita
24. Masahiro Nasukawa
25. Kazuki Hiramoto
26. Takahiro Shibasaki
27. Ryohei Hayashi
28. Kento Tsurumaki
29. Takuya Wada
30. Yu Tomidokoro
31. Junpei Shinmura
34. Tomoyuki Suzuki

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Kits Ahoy!

Bonus Track

Like the home ones, don't like the road ones, and do I really need to say anything about the keeper jerseys?


2 35 minute halves against Jobu University saw Verdy go old first and new second in a 4-3-3 alignment

GK 高木 Takagi

DF 福田 Fukuda、土屋、Tsuchiya 富澤 Tomisawa、永里 Nagasato

MF 河村 Kawamura 、菅原 Sugawara、滝澤 Takizawa

FW 飯尾、Iio 大黒 Oguro、平本 Hiramoto

they went down 1-0 at the half

GK 鈴木 Suzuki DF 岩倉Iwakura、飯田 Iida、新村 Shinmura、高橋 Takahashi(ユース)MF 弦巻、Tsurumaki ブルーノ Bruno (練習生)、柴崎(晃)ShibasakiFW レオナルドLeonardo、井上 Inoue、河野 Kawano

2-0 to the kids as Inoue and Leonardo scored.

Hattori gets the armband back and the new slogan is DASH 2009.