Thursday, July 29

Vissel 1 - 3 Gamba

I didn't write a report immediately after this match on purpose. I was absolutely irate. There is one, simple reason why we lost the match in this manner.
Toshiya Miura.

I have never claimed to be a football "expert", however, I support my team with passion and watch the games more conscious of team selection and tactics than the average fan.
Last Wednesday night, Miura got it ALL wrong, and it was obvious even before they kicked off.

Let me explain.
For reference, here are the starting lineups for the last 2 matches.

Vissel 3 - 1 Omiya (7/25)
Enomoto
Gakuto, Kitamoto, Komoto, Mogi
Park, Matsuoka, Edmilson, Botti
Okubo, Tokura

Vissel 1 - 3 Gamba (7/28)
Enomoto
Mogi, Kitamoto, Komoto, Tomita
Matsuoka
Park, Mihara, Okubo, Botti
Yoshida

Right then, the obvious change in formation was from a 4-4-2 to a 4-1-4-1.
This formation is commonly referred to as "negative football." Its main objective is to crowd the midfield, but can give you more attacking options with possession. One can assume that Miura opted for this approach based on the former, given the fact that Gamba are so good at moving (and keeping) the ball in the middle of the park. 4-1-4-1 is a comparatively unpopular formation mainly because it is reliant on two super players - the two "1"s. The lone striker needs to be able to move into space quickly, have enough strength to hold off defenders while trying to hold the ball up and be a good header of the ball. Meanwhile, the defensive MF needs to be, pardon my French, a fucking wicked defender with the ability to ping a precision pass to your wide players.

I hardly ever see this formation in the EPL anymore. ManU never use it, Liverpool used it once last year with Carragher in front of the back four and Chelsea only use it occasionally with Essien/Mikel and Drogba. I also recall Arsene Wenger using a 4-1-4-1 with Song and Bendtner when they beat Porto 5-0 in Champions League this year. Basically, all the aforementioned players possess the qualities needed to fulfill these respective roles.
Yoshida and Matsuoka do not.

The team.

Enomoto (GK): Kept us in the game several times with some outstanding saves. Enough said.

Mogi (RB): Moved from left back, the position he has played reasonably well for the whole year, to right back, the position that Gakuto played amazingly well last Wednesday.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

Kitamoto (CB): Has been off form for about a year now. He still gives more than most but he's not good enough at CB. He lacks the confidence (ability?) to pass the ball forward with any accuracy and when he does the passes are too slow. He's been at fault for many goals this year.

Komoto (CB): Solid.Great header of the ball and can be a hard bastard when he needs to be. However, like Kitamoto, doesn't offer much in the passing department.

Tomita (LB): Terrible. A CB played out of his natural position for a reason I still can't find. He looked lost. There was no attempt on his part to move forward whatsoever, and 90% of his passes went back to Komoto. So why the hell was he playing so wide? Substituted in the 60th minute - 60 minutes too late.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

Matsuoka (Vol): I was relieved at the start of the season to see him back in his best position. He is still learning a lot and has done alright this year in the double volance partnership with Edmilson. So what does the manager decide to do for the most difficult game of the season? Play him by himself.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

Park (RMF): Pretty much absent through lack of service. Besides, he should not have been played in a formation that is meant to stifle the opposition in midfield because he cannot defend.

Mihara (CMF): Another experiment in his first start of the season. The kid has only made 3 league appearances in his short career - all as a substitute. Could you think of a better time to throw him in against the BEST PLAYER IN JAPAN? Substituted in the 76th minute - around about the time he should have come ON.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

Okubo (CMF): Too good for this manager. He had some moments but was forced to drop back too much and couldn't link up with Yoshida.

Botti (LMF): Our best player. Forced to cover twice as much ground as he should have due to deficiencies around him. Looked dejected at the end.

Yoshida (CF): Failed and substituted at half time. As previously mentioned, does not have (never has had) any of the abilities required to play the lone striker role in a 4-1-4-1. Simple as that.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

Substitutes

Gakuto (for Yoshida): Mogi moved forward. Took the manager only 45 minutes to work out what we all knew before the match started. He had an immediate impact.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

Popo (for Tomita): Immediate impact. Scored a nice goal and prevented the home fans from taking the field to forcibly remove Tomita ourselves.

Edmilson (for Mihara): This one I love. You're 3-1 down and the manager brings on a defensive MF for an attacking MF.
Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot.

We are Vissel Kobe - a mediocre J.League team at best. I don't expect to win every game and I can accept the fact that we are consistently in the bottom half of the table.
But I cannot accept the fact that Toshiya Miura is getting paid to do what I could do ten times better.

Miura - you are a FUCKING idiot. Please quit.

1 comment:

Mik said...

Agreed.