Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Fujita In, Shimada Out

Tons of speculation, but it's finally confirmed: Sagan Tosu's prolific striker Yoshihito Fujita has signed for the Squirrels. This means that Ardija for 2009 will have in the squad a pair of J2's top scorers from the season just finished, in Fujita - who has scored 42 goals in the last two years - and ex-Shonan Bellmare forward Naoki Ishihara. Meanwhile midfielder and so-called Assist King Yusuke Shimada has gone in the opposite direction and joined Tosu for the year, having spent 2008 on loan at Thespa Kusatsu.



SMB 6 January 2009 at 18:19  

This was my wish list on the old site.....so far

1. A cornerback to partner with Tsukamoto (Not yet)
2. An upgrade over Tomidai (We'll see on the 10th)
3. A big smart physical C Mid like Sidiclei (Korea?)
4. another side mid (No but maybe Chikara goes back to the side and Ichihara can fill in as well. Maybe one of the kids will step up)
5 A speedy forward (Yes)
6 a backup keeper (Yes)

Fukai from JEF would be 1 on my list of signings because he would fill 4 and 5. Denis is very talented but it seems like the flow of our game stops with him because he needs the ball to be effective. If he doesn't have the ball, he doesn't seem to care.

This was a big ole no and I'm not sure how Denis will fit but the offseason has gotten off to a good start.

Furtho 6 January 2009 at 18:55  

1. We are pretty well covered for sidebacks in terms of number if not in quality. I would be surprised to see someone else come in to cover this area.

2. Fingers crossed that both Nakazawa and Mato will come in; that would have the potential to provide us with one of the strongest central defensive partnerships in the league. I would also be very keen to see more goals scored by these type of players from set plays; ever since Miura left, the number of goals that we score from free kicks and corners has declined markedly.

3. Agreed that this would be a big plus, but am not sure what evdience there is for any such Korean player coming in?

4. There are other options within the squad, as you say, and it depends on the formation that Jang ends up using. However it was also notable in the latter stages of 2008 how much more effective Daigo was in a more central role.

5. Ishihara looks speedy, Fujita is more the big lumbering type. Both of them of course have decent scoring records.

6. What do you think about Takagi? I don't think I've ever actually seen him play except for Sapporo against Omiya, so have no means of comparing him with Aratani.

SMB 6 January 2009 at 19:51  

1 I really hope Teru picks it up this year. He could do it. You could see Tomita slot in as well.

2. Agreed.

3. No real evidence but I can't see us not having a Korean player with an open spot and a Korean coach. Aoki could make the step up now that the U-20s are in offseason. He did used to manage Konno when he started so I am anxious to see if he could work his magic.

4. Agreed

5. Yes

6. He played well when I saw him play against Verdy. He's young and still a bit rough but he's mobile and I think Shirai will do great things with him. Also he got shelled last year behind that awful defense.


Taipei Squirrel,  6 January 2009 at 23:43  

Whats wrong with Shimada? whys he never been brought back into the side?

Furtho 7 January 2009 at 02:07  

Taipei Squirrel, welcome.

It is hard to know what has gone wrong with Shimada. He hasn't been on the first team radar since Robert Verbeek was coach in 2007 and my understanding is that at that time Shimada was told that basically he wasn't good enough for the first team in J1. So that year, when he came back to Omiya after having been a star at Kusatsu during 2006, was really wasted for him. Why they have subsequently kept loaning him out instead of just selling him is a strange one, though.

By the way I saw a video of Shimada scoring a really superb goal for Kusatsu in a Best of 2008 compilation the other day, I'll try to dig out a link.

Furtho 7 January 2009 at 14:56  

Here's the Youtube link mentioned above. Shimada's goal is against Fukuoka and is at 1 min 37 secs; it looks to me like he might have scored another cracker against Gifu @ 3 mins 3 secs, although I'm not 100% sure it's him.


Edo,  9 January 2009 at 22:22  

I echo Taipei Squirrel's comments on Little Shimada. The wee man is by far the most talented,exciting and dependable player the Orange have ever had and if this is in any way indicative of how the new coach wants to do things then it looks like we are in for another long, boring season where Morite spens far too much time on the pitch.
On another note the new site looks great - keep up the good work, it is much appreciated all over this Orange Planet.

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