Category Archives: F.C. Tokyo Reports

[Youtube/Photo Roundup] 04.19 vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Sadly the guy who usually posts highlight clips off the TV broadcast has disabled embedding of all of his videos, but there’s enough handheld stuff to make up for it. All photos are mine, all YouTube vids are their respective owners’.

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Kawasaki’s supporters out in force

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Tokyo’s supporters in high spirits.

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Hooray giant flag displays!

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

“Walk on… walk on… with hope in your hearts…”

Video of YNWA – the supporters actually started singing before the song started and we all looked a little silly trying to get back on track, but we ended strong!

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Nagatomo on the defense!

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Pressure on Kawasaki.

Cabore goal!

Otake goal!

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Kawasaki fans try to rally the troops.

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Otoko ni wa, jibun no sekai ga aru…

Konno goal!

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Juninho attacked from all sides.

(04.19.08) FC Tokyo vs. Kawasaki Frontale

Victory!

Team bow and Otake’s curtain call to the supporters.

End of Otake’s curtain call and Akamine’s hero interview.

REPORT: 04.19 FC Tokyo 4:2 (2:2) Kawasaki Frontale (J1 Week 7)

Let’s get the TL;DR version out of the way…

FC Tokyo, if by some microscopic chance you’re paying attention to this little blog? that is how you win matches, and how you will continue to win matches.

On a day that started sunny, clouds threatened throughout the match but it didn’t start to rain until most of us began to leave the stadium. But a storm was brewing on the field as the 13th round of the Tamagawa Clasico was one to remember.

The boys in blue and red dominated the pitch almost from start – none of the mistakes we’ve seen in the past, or at least if they were made they were all done in the last few minutes when the match was all but decided. Tokyo dominated the midfield and kept constant pressure on Kawasaki to the point where it was only a matter of time before they would score – the question was when.

Kawasaki drew first blood with a set piece – these seem to be Tokyo’s weak point as of late (recall that Verdy’s one goal against Tokyo was from a free kick). Tokyo was unable to clear and Kashima foward Chong Tese kicked to the lower right post past Shiota. However, FCT quickly countered, and 6 minutes later Cabore slammed in the equalizer. Just a minute later, Frontale capitalized on a miscue near the Tokyo goal – an FC Tokyo player fell over Shiota as he was diving to make the save and as a result Shiota got caught outside of the box, leaving midfielder Taniguchi a practical open net. This would end up being the last major defensive mistake Tokyo would make for the rest of the game.

Right before halftime, Akamine came through with a fantastic goal to tie things up at 2 apiece, and the supporters behind the goal were rabid.

After halftime, Tokyo continued to pressure, but was unable to get a score. Then, in the 63rd minute, Otake came in for Tokunaga and in the same minute sliced through the Kawasaki defense and slammed in what would turn out to be the game winner. As you watched Otake slip past one defender after another, you knew 10 seconds before it happened it was going to be a goal, and what a glorious way to pop his cherry. 7 minutes later Konno pushed a fourth goal in with what appeared to be his knee and was almost an own-goal, essentially sealing Kawasaki’s fate with 20 minutes left in the match. Even the Kawasaki players seemed resigned to going back across the Tamagawa with no points by the 80th or so minutes, despite a few strong offensive pushes that tested Tokyo’s defense and kept Shiota busy. But, in the end, the melody of nemuranai machi rose into the night as FC Tokyo took home the win.

Game notes:

-This match was pretty rough – four yellow cards were given, and a couple were omitted, including a rough collision by Kawasaki GK Kawashima on defender Nagatomo in the second half. Much like in last year’s match, Kawasaki essentially attempted to bully FC Tokyo – except this time, FCT fought back and did so convincingly

-Juninho had a couple breakout moments where he wove past the first line of defense, but in the end he was contained in the same way Hulk was contained.

-Stupid mistakes were way down – like, insignificant compared to the B-Team effort that they put up against Jubilo and even smaller compared to Verdy. Better passing in coverage, fewer turnovers. A few give-and-go plays didn’t go as planned, but more did than didn’t. Additionally, according to the official website FC Tokyo took 8 shots and made 4 of them. I’m not sure whether I should be happy that they’re picking their opportunities or upset that they’re not taking more shots, but 4 is the most they’ve scored since last August against Sanfrecce Hiroshima.

-Attendance was 22,283 – roughly the same as for the Verdy match, which surprised me. I’m inclined to think that a number of Tokyo fans feared the rain and stayed home, and they missed out. Kawasaki’s supporters were loud and impressive – fat lot of good it did them in the end, but they’re probably the largest supporter group we’ve opposed so far this year, including Verdy.

-Defender Hideki Sahara faced his former squadmates on Kawasaki for the first time since joining FC Tokyo. He received a yellow card and plenty of cheers from the home crowd as well as a couple gate flags making note of his change of residence: Photo 1 Photo 2

-Akamine got the hero interview but Otake got summoned for the sha-sha-sha chant. He went right up to the front of the supporter’s section so I didn’t see anything but I expect it’ll show up on YouTube soon enough.

-Speaking of photos I did appear in the Match Day Program – they did not include my plug for the blog but they did fix my bungled Japanese, so one for two. I’ll scan it tonight or tomorrow when I upload my photos from the game.

Finally the match notes:

STARTING LINEUPS

FC Tokyo – (GK) Shiota, (DF) Tokunaga, Sahara, Fujiyama, Nagatomo, (MF) Asari, Kajiyama, Konno, Kurisawa, Akamine, (FW) Cabore

Kawasaki Frontale – (GK) Kawajima, (DF) Igawa, Terada, Ito, (MF) Mori, Nakamura, Taniguchi, Yamagishi, Ohashi, (FW) Chong, Juninho

SUBSTITUTIONS

FC Tokyo – Otake (Kurisawa 63′), Kawaguchi (Cabore 84′)

Kawasaki Frontale – Yabu (Ohashi, 63′), Kurotsu (Yamagishi, 74′), Kukino (Mori, 84′)

GOALS

FC Tokyo – Cabore (25′), Akamine (43′), Otake (63′), Konno (70′)

Kawasaki Frontale – Chong (19′), Taniguchi (26′)

YELLOW CARDS

FC Tokyo – Sahara (’19)

Kawasaki Frontale – Taniguchi (’31), Terada (’46), Mori (’48)

With today’s matches over, FC Tokyo finds itself in 3rd place in the standings – naturally this may (and likely will) change after tomorrow’s games, but things are looking up.  The next match is an away game against Jubilo – I won’t be there but I’m sure I’ll figure out some way to watch the game and get some sort of report up.

04.16.08 Nabisco Cup Group B Result – FC Tokyo 1:1 (0:0) Jubilo Iwata

A much more spirited match than anyone likely expected ended in a draw for the Gasmen as a 10-man Jubilo struck in stoppage time for the equalizer.  The boys in blue and red controlled the pitch for most of the game and got off twice as many shots, but in the end it wasn't enough to get the three points.

Tokyo, running what looked almost like a 4-2-2-2 formation, performed very sloppily in the first 15-20 minutes, turning the ball over several times.  Jubilo was not able to capitalize and Tokyo settled down, peppering the opposing keeper with shots that didn't quite find their way into the net.

Cabore was stretchered to the sideline following a hard tackle in the first half, and while he walked back onto the field he was replaced a few minutes later by Akamine, a troubling sign.  Moniwa fell hard in the second half and took a minute to get back up, but he would go on to stay in the rest of the game.

Akamine's goal in the second half was a beauty and although they weren't able to score a second goal (another troubling sign), the fact that Tokyo outshot Jubilo 15-7 is a promising sign, as are some of the shots from farther out in the box that the team took, particularly an early effort by Nagatomo.  Tokyo's attackers love to get in nice and close for their goals but the sooner more players start emulating strikes like the one Hanyu delivered against Verdy, the better they'll be – otherwise their opponents will be able to thwart them by crowding the box.

Another surprise of the night was Hirayama – Jofuku obviously had enough faith in him following his performance against Verdy to put him back in the starting lineup, and Hirayama showed enough hustle to elicit cheers from the fans several times over the course of the night, several times pushing dangerously close to the Jubilo goal and twice getting a shot off.  If Cabore's early exit turns out to be an injury look for No. 13 to start across from Akamine on Saturday.

Jubilo's goal happened during a 4-minute stoppage time, in a surprise push following NIshi's ejection that didn't quite catch Tokyo off guard but at the same time shouldn't have been allowed to take place to begin with.  If I saw it correctly, Shiota got his hands on the first shot and batted it away, but Jubilo midfielder Komano got the rebound and slammed in the goal.

FC Tokyo

Starting Lineup: Shiota (GK), Tokunaga (DF), Bruno (DF), Moniwa (DF), Nagatomo (DF), Kajiyama (MF), Konno (MF), Kanezawa (MF), Kurisawa (MF), Cabore (FW), Hirayama (FW)

Substitutions: Akamine (Cabore, 35'), Otake (Kurisawa, 62'), Ikegami (Kanezawa, 70')

Goals: Akamine (51')

Yellow Cards: Kurisawa (62')

Jubilo Iwata

Starting Lineup: Kawaguchi (GK), Suzuki (DF), Tanaka (DF), Kayoshi (DF), Komano (MF), Kawamura (MF), Ueda (MF), Naruoka (MF), Nishi (MF), Jiushinyo (FW), Nakayama (FW)

Substitutions: Bandai (Juishinyo, 62'), Inuzuka (Naruoka, 66'), Nanami (Nakayama, 77')

Goals: Komano (89')

Yellow Cards: Suzuki (43'), Tanaka (78'), Nishi (87'), Nishi (89')

Red Cards: Nishi ('89)

Also, while I was taking some photos around the stadium to put on here, I was interviewed by FC Tokyo staffers who put together the matchday programs for their Blue & Red Caravan feature, which is basically little mini-interviews with the fans (in my case, favorite player, how I got into FC Tokyo, etc).  I managed to pull it off in Japanese without sounding like a total retard (or at least they'll edit any retardedness out) and if they're to be believed I'll be featured in the program for Saturday's match against Kawasaki.  I'm… afraid.  But I did mention this blog so here's hoping they include the URL!

In other Group B action, Shimizu S-Pulse apparently curb-stomped a Hulk-less Verdy to the tune of 5:0.  Ouch.  I feel like I should send the guys over at Soilent Green 1969 a funeral wreath or something.

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YouTube Roundup: 04.12.08 “at” Tokyo Verdy

So, I can’t start this blog without saying something about the Tokyo Derby that took place yesterday evening, resulting in the most energy I’ve ever seen come from our supporters. However much we hate Verdy, it’s obvious that the Tokyo Derby is good for both sides and so I wish Verdy the best of luck in staying at the bottom of the division, but not so far down as to get relegated 😉

In any case here’s a few videos that should sum up the day quite handily:

スパサカ Pickup Feature

Coverage from TBS’s well-known football program. Includes audio of Verdy’s manager getting pissed after Fukunishi’s yellow card.

Homemade Compilation

This appears to be shot from the sidelines or from damned close to the field in any case. Good angles on the two FC Tokyo goals.

Postgame bow & シャーシャーシャ Cheer

This cheer was originally started by Amaral back in the day. The thing is that in the last couple weeks, duties to deliver this cheer have fallen to new players such as Otake (last week against Sapporo) and Hanyu (this week against Verdy). Unfortunately, Hanyu had no idea what to do, and so after some confusion he had to run over and ask other teammates for instructions. Fortunately Nagatomo joined him at the last minute to help out when he still seemed lost and then performs some acrobatics of his own.

Next match, this coming Wednesday at Kokuritsu against Jubilo Iwata! It’s a weeknight Nabisco Cup qualifier so I don’t expect that the supporters will be anywhere near capacity, but as it’s been 8 or 9 months since I’ve been to these grounds I’m looking forward to it.