Saturday, 27 August 2011

Jubilo Preview

Going into Saturday evening's game with Jubilo Iwata it's one win in eleven for Jun Suzuki's lacklustre Omiya team, lacklustre also being an appropriate word to describe the midweek encounter at Albirex Niigata. The home side probably came closer to taking all three points on Wednesday, most notably when Takashi Kitano had to scramble to keep Yuuta Mikado's long range shot from bouncing over the line. It was lucky for the Squirrels that Swans forward Bruno Lopes had a poor game, seemingly unaware of the lack of pace of Yuki Fukaya.

Coincidentally Fukaya almost put Omiya ahead in the second half with a powerful header that fizzed just past the post, but other than that the game was most memorable for the unhappy sight of Lee Chun Soo being stretchered off after less than fifteen minutes' play, with what looked like a hamstring injury. There's been no indication yet from the club as to how long Chun Soo is expected to be out, but it looks like it will be a good few weeks on the sidelines for the unlucky South Korean.

So who to come in in his place for the Jubilo game? Agent Orange's favourite Daigo Watanabe it was who got the call from Suzuki for an unexpectedly lengthy substitute appearance at Niigata, but Chikara Fujimoto and even, he says in hope rather than expectation, Naoki Ishihara must be in contention for a starting position. Whoever gets the nod will have their work cut out, anyway, dealing with the imbalance of Jubilo's strong attack line - which fired six past title-chasing Kashiwa Reysol only two weeks ago - in comparison with Ardija's fragile defence and the second-worst scoring record in the division. To win a home game! It must feel amazing. But all this hoping for a victory stuff, it's making me feel a bit forlorn, really. A bit pathetic.



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