Thursday, 28 May 2009

Good News For Ichikawa

Squirrels young forward Masahiko Ichikawa has recommenced training, as his rehabilitation continues from the serious injury picked up during the J1 match with Gamba Osaka. The 23-year-old former Hosei University student, who had high hopes for success this season and indeed commenced the 2009 campaign under new coach Jang Wae Ryong in impressive style, was at first predicted to be out for a period of three months.

Nevertheless, there were concerns among some Ardija fans that Ichikawa would suffer the same fate as Akira Ishigame, another young member of the Omiya squad who was forced to quit football completely after being unable to recover from the same injury. The entire J-League career of defender Ishigame consisted of a handful of games played when on loan at J2 outfit Thespa Kusatsu and he is now employed as a member of the Squirrels' office staff.

But Ichikawa is confident that the initial forecast for his own recovery will not prove to be far of the mark, meaning that he may be in line for a return to the Omiya team in July or August. His determination, enthusiasm and will to win are certainly attributes of value to Jang as the Squirrels seek to rise up the table following the restart of the J1 fixtures late in June. It's to be hoped that Ichikawa gets the opportunity to add to his tally of J-League goals sooner rather than later.



Anonymous,  28 May 2009 at 16:33  

What type of injury did Ichikawa suffer?

Also I was wondering why there is such a long break in the JLeague season? Is it because of International fixtures being played?

Furtho 28 May 2009 at 20:04  

Ichikawa broke a metatarsal in his right foot, Daniel. He was a rookie in the squad last season but never really had any opportunities to show what he could do, at least in the league. This year, with a new coach, he was by all accounts determined to make the breakthrough and was excited about having a chance to get into the team.

Coach Jang was essentially rotating Ichikawa and two other strikers at the start of the season and he was doing well, but then suffered this disastrous injury in only the fifth game. Apparently he was crying in the dressing room when all the other players came back in after the final whistle.

There's a break in the J1 fixture list for the final batch of three World Cup qualifiers, yes. However, aside from the four entrants in the Asian Champions League (Kashima, Gamba, Kawasaki and Nagoya), all the other J1 teams will be completing their games in the group stage of the Nabisco Cup tournament. Check the left panel of this page for Ardija's details.

Anonymous,  29 May 2009 at 04:23  

What a shame for Ichikawa, it seems the metatarsal injury has become more common these days. With the likes of Rooney, and Beckham getting the same injury in recent years. It could totally alter Ichikawa's career as personally I think Rooney hasn't been as good as he was for Man United since that injury he received. Hopefully I'm wrong and he makes a full recovery!

Thanks for the explanation for the halt in JLeague action. Hopefully the Squirrels can over come Hiroshima on the 30th

Furtho 29 May 2009 at 14:30  

There's no doubt it's a very serious injury and because it recently led to the end of the career of another Ardija player, that's why some people were so anxious about the same thing happening to Ichikawa. He was just walking around and doing some stretching in training on Wednesday, but seemed satisfied with his progress to date. Fingers crossed it will work out okay for him.

Under normal circumstances there would be a proper preview on this site for the Hiroshima Nabisco Cup game, but I'm travelling over the next 48 hours. Regular service will resume again next week.

Omiya Fan,  30 May 2009 at 19:42  

Hammered 25-4 in shots and destroyed 7-0 by Hiroshima.
Is this our worst ever result statistically?
There weren't any red cards for us so it looks as if we were purely thrashed.
Anyone see it?

Anonymous,  30 May 2009 at 22:10  

I'm guessing Uchida and Aoki take the fall for this game because Jang has pretty much cemented 5 or 6 guys in the lineup.

You gotta feel for Tomita who got brought down and then watched the team give up 7 from the bench.

These things happen.

Furtho 25 June 2009 at 08:07  

Encouraging news: looks like Ichikawa has stepped up his training as rehabilitation continues.

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