Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Agent Orange: Slaughterhouse 5

Apologies to Kurt Vonnegut (whose work I've never even touched) but I had to burgle the title of his famous book because that's the feeling I got throughout last Saturday's game at NACK5 against Vegalta Sendai. It was a bludgeoning in high order. A slaying. Dare I say a slaughter. I'm not saying Vegalta were dirty in that game (don't get me wrong - they were, they were lowbridging people in the air all night long. I'm still shocked to see them only get 25 yellows and no reds all season), because that's not the reason they won.

And I'm not going to use the excuse that they got an extra day's rest and virtually no travel with back-to-back games in Saitama, while we slogged down to Sanfrecce Hiroshima and back (although we did - the second time the schedulers have hosed us on a home game). I'm not going to use those excuses. Because the real reason was they just wanted it more. They played that game like we were Kashima Antlers... and we aren't. We played that game like we were Kashima Antlers... and we aren't. We're not good enough to overlook any team.

We should have learned that lesson when we came out completely flat against Vissel Kobe. Or Sanfrecce. We came out flat, again. Maybe we were too happy about Wednesday's win. Maybe inserting an out-of-shape and out-of-sync Lee Ho to anchor the midfield was a very bad move... no maybe, it was. Whatever happened, we blew an enormous chance to end their season and push us closer to safety. The sad thing is we aren't even competitive against that team. Let's look at some numbers.

Counting the Nabisco Cup, our overall record this year is 7-8-12, with a GD -9 (23 to 32). Not good.

Now take out the Vegalta games. We are 7-8-9, with a GD 0 (22 to 22).

Our record against Sendai is 0-0-3 with one goal for and ten against. This is a team that went fourteen games without beating anybody. They've only won three times on the road: Jubilo in the opener and then Omiya, twice. Kyoto Sanga and Shonan Bellmare beat them. I can't explain it. They play like garbage for half a year, come in and make us look like Saitama SC's youth team. That beating was so bad that our reserves on Monday dropped a 4-0 decision to Yokohama FC. I blame it on that loss. Seriously, I think the franchise has Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Shusuke Tsubouchi was a literal casualty after a late challenge.

Oh yeah, Fernandinho. I don't know how or why the permed little lawn troll gets up for games against us, but he does. I think he's scored five goals against us this year in the three games. Whatever we did to you, Mr Fernandinho, I'm sorry. And it's nice to see an FC Tokyo reject revive his season against us, as well. God, what a wonderful combination Shingo Akamine and Vegalta Sendai are together. They're about as appealing as natto and dick.

This might sound like sour grapes and ranting and it should do, because it is. I'm off the charts today, this is a rant big time. Right now I'm writing for me, not you. I'm the victim here... let me continue.

I kind of touched around the edges on Vegalta's revered fanbase in a past post. It offended a few people, because I guess the new conventional wisdom is that Vegalta Sendai has just the most awesome fans in the world and if they didn't have a team, that they would just jump right on to the Vegalta fan wagon, yeehaw!


You know who Vegalta is? They're Urawa Reds right before everybody got tired of them. All the complaints that we hear about Urawa - ooooooh, they're rude. Ooooooh, they boo too much - Vegalta doesn't do that?


I was at a Tokyo Verdy game in 2006 where their fans lost their friggin' minds over a couple of bad calls. They were close to going over the fences onto the field. In 2005, they were putting up signs telling their then-coach Satoshi Tsunami to die. Over their six-year stint in J2 they hemorrhaged fans to the tune of over 12,000. That's despite the fact that they were paying good money to bring in talented foreign players and coaches.

Joel Santana did a stint there. Thiago Neves did a stint there. The team did what it could to compete for promotion every year. But they lost half the fans. They do sing Twisted Sister songs, though. Never mind the fact that Twisted Sister sucked when they first came out, sucked at the height of their popularity, and suck now. Honestly, Dee Snider creeps me out. Vegalta fans kind of do too.

Good talk, thanks for that.

Nice win, Vegalta! Now you can do us all a favor and piss off back to J2.

Yeah, I'm still a little bitter.


In honor of our little Tohoku friends.

You didn't think I was gonna actually pick that awful Twisted Sister song, did you?

I need a shower.



richy 8 September 2010 at 23:10  

Haha interesting read...
Was planning to hit this game but went to South Africa instead...

Gotta laugh at some of your comments...
J2 Sendai fans, I can understand you being disgruntled (Like most teams that think they deserve to be in the J1, especially teams just relegated, they boo quite a bit). So yeah Sendai fans were roudy in the J2 years, and things did deteriorate a bit as the years got longer, but no more then any other team who thought that they were better than they were!
(The exception is of course the signs about Satoshi Tsunami. Definitely shit there..)

But anyway, this year in the J1.. shit, except games against Omiya, Sendai are humble as pie. Hardly any booing, just a big reality check that they can't just waltz into the J1 and expect to stay there by doing nothing...

Really don't see what the fuss is about...

Seen a lot worse coming from Urawa, Kashiwa and Gamba then up north...

But whatever.

Anyway onto the footy, I'm of course hoping that Sendai stay up but its looking tough. Shonan - assured, Kyoto - not the best.. but that third relegation spot, it's going to be interesting to see what happens there. General consensus here (around Gifu) is that Omiya won't go down, Sendai too.. but that doesn't really give me any reassurance.
(Especially if the Emperor's Cup loss to Sony Sendai is anything to go by.. haha)

Whatever, enjoy the rest of ya season!

  © Blogger templates Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP